Tuesday, March 22, 2011

More goodies from the garden

Look at this basket of fruit and veg that I picked from the garden after having been away for the long weekend:

There are so many apples on the trees I'm not quite sure what to do with them all.  I wish I could send them to Japan.  And the little princess says she prefers the bought ones.  It's narrowing down the lunch box fruit with bananas off the air.

At least the cherry tomatoes have got going and there is still plenty of basil left.  The zucchinis had tripled in size.  I've done the zucchini slice/frittata thing so now I am sloshing sliced zucchini with olive oil and roasting in the oven or cooking on the barbeque.  They have a beautiful buttery texture.  Soup will be next.

But back to the pears we picked the other day.  They were lovely beurre bosc pears from a totally neglected tree at a cottage on the farm.  So this is what I made:

It is unadorned, as it was headed for the freezer in anticipation of a steady stream of visitors we are expecting over the upcoming holidays and Easter.  It nearly made it except it was the dearly beloved's birthday and he felt entitled to a slice due to being "neglected" by his wife and family.  This is a divine cake.  Not even sure why I'm sharing the recipe, in fact not really sure where I got it from, scribbled as it is on a sheet of butter splattered paper.  


Set oven to 180, line a 24cm springform pan with baking paper
Fry 2-3 pears, peeled, cored and sliced into eighths, in 1 tblsp each of butter and brown sugar and a teaspoon of vanilla extract until partially cooked.
In a saucepan combine 1 cup of golden syrup and 125g butter and melt gently.
Add 1 cup brown sugar and mix well.
In a bowl mix 1 1/2 cups plain flour
                       1 teasp bicarb soda
                       2 beaten eggs
                       3/4 cup buttermilk
Add the melted syrup, butter and sugar and mix well
Pour into cake tin.  Drop in the pears and push down.
Cook 30-40 minutes until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean (make sure it is cooked properly.  If it is getting too dark on the top reduce the heat slightly and cover with foil).

With the rest I did some roasted pears based on a recipe I saw in delicious magazine:

Again, they are in this dish to go into the freezer (we are attempting to reduce our sugar intake at the moment).  

Heat the oven to 180.
I peeled the pears and cut them in half, leaving on the stems.

Melt 80g butter in a frying pan that can go in the oven (any stove/ovenproof pot would do) and add 1/4 cup caster sugar and 1/4 cup dark brown sugar.  Swirl around as it dissolves and add the pears, cut side down basting with the butter.  Put in the oven and roast for about 20 minutes, basting occasionally, then turn them over and cook for a further 10 minutes until tender and golden.  The cooking time will depend on how ripe the pears are, you don't want them to lose their shape.

Remove the pears to a shallow dish.  Put the frying pan back on the heat and bring to the boil.  Whisk in 2 tblsp maple syrup or honey, 1/3 cup cream, 1 teasp vanilla essence and a pinch of salt.  Mix well.

You could serve the pears and pour over the sauce, but I added all the sauce to the pears and put them in the freezer.  I will let you know how they come out.              

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