Thursday, September 23, 2010

Poached Pear and Almond Souffle Cake

Last night I had a little dinner party with some good friends who enjoy good food. I was in charge of dessert (any surprises there?) and I made this:
It was delicious and pretty easy to make! They look beautiful and you poach the pears in a liquid that smells like Christmas! Plus it gave me an excuse to make a purchase I've wanted for a while: Ramekins! That's probably a dumb thing to want, but they are pretty and white and I'm excited to bake lots of good things in them.

This recipe also led me to two other exciting things: mytartlette, where I found the recipe via foodgawker--an awesome food blog aggregate, which I found via Jacqueline!

And here is the recipe {via mytartlette}

Poached Pear And Almond Fallen Souffle Cakes:

Makes 6

Note: you can core the pears from the bottom to about 1 inch from the top with an apple corer but these are so tiny that I just removed the stem button at the bottom. Everything else in the core baked to very soft texture and the seeds were easy to remove while eating (kind of like tails on baked shrimp).

For the poached pears:
6 mini d'Anjou pears, peeled (or other small pears like Forelles or Seckel)
1/2 cup (100gr) sugar
2-3 cloves
2-3 cardamom pods
1 stick cinnamon
5-6 allspice berries
1-2 star anise
1/2 lemon
4 cups (1 liter) water

For the cakes:
3 tablespoons (40gr) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup (100gr) sugar
2 eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3/4 cup (1
90ml) heavy cream
1 cup ground almonds (blanched or skin on - your preference)
1/4 cup (40gr) sorghum flour (or use 1/4 cup all purpose flour)
1 teaspoon baking powder

Prepare the pears:
Place the pears, spices, lemon and water in tall saucepan and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Lower the heat and let them simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the pears are just soft (poke with a toothpick to check).
Remove from the water using a slotted spoon and allow to cool on paper towel or baking rack.

Prepare the cakes:
Preheat the oven to 350F and position a rack in the middle.
Slightly butter or spray 6 ramekins and place them on a baking sheet. Set aside.
In the bowl if an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffly (about 3 minutes). Add the eggs, one a time and beat well in between each addition. Reduce the speed to low and add the vanilla, heavy cream, almonds, flour and baking powder and beat until incorporated. Fill each ramekins about 1/3 full with the batter and place a poached pear in the center.
Bake for 25-30 minutes.

1 comment:

Sarita said...

These look absolutely beautiful. AND with the sorghum flour....gluten free?!!

You are such the gourmet. And Joel will be super impressed.