Here in Canada, maple syrup season is starting, which means plenty of sugary and delicious recipe ideas! Maple is, of course, synonymous with Canada (we do produce 85% of the world’s supply!), and it comes as no surprise that we love to cook with it. Maple is a flavour that has to walk the fine balance between “too sweet” and “just right”. I created these Maple Flambéd Pears with that in mind.
Flambéd Pears with Maple-Orange Praline Glaze and Spiced Maple Cream
I’ll be the first to admit that my measurements for this recipe are somewhat… hazy. I came up with this recipe on the fly (between the grocery store and the kitchen) as the ending of a special meal, and I did measure things particularly carefully. Luckily, it is not a recipe that requires a great deal of fine measurement!
- 6 ripe pears (3 if you are only serving each guest half a pear – which is enough, trust me!)
- healthy dollop of Grand Marnier (or Amaretto, or Brandy)
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- dollop of maple syrup (for pears)
- 1 cup 35% whipping cream
- 2-3 tbsp (to taste) maple syrup (for cream)
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds
- 1/2 cup maple syrup (for glaze)
- juice of 1 small to medium-sized orange
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- Peel and cut in half the pears, leaving the stems but removing the seed. Set them aside.
- Lightly toast the almonds at 350° until golden brown. Set aside.
- In a small saucepan, bring the 1/2 cup of maple syrup, orange juice, and sugar to a boil. Allow it to simmer for approximately 5 minutes, or until it is reduced by about half. Add the almonds and allow the glaze to cool.
- On medium-high speed, beat the cream until it is thick but not completely whipped, adding the 2-3 tbsp of maple syrup (you can sweeten it to taste) and a healthy grating of nutmeg and cinnamon. It should hold its shape, but not form stiff peaks. Chill in the fridge.
- In a heavy-bottomed skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. When the butter begins to lightly brown, add the dollop of maple syrup, swirling the mixture in the pan. Add the pears, cut-side down. Sprinkle the pears with cinnamon and nutmeg. Allow the pears to cook for about 5 minutes, or until the bottoms are golden brown. Turn down the heat. Working quickly, add the liqueur and light it with a long BBQ lighter! BE CAREFUL!
- Allow the pears to continue to cook until the liquid turns syrupy and dark. Cool the pears briefly in the pan.
- Plate your dessert by placing the pear cut-side-up on the plate. You can drizzle some of the syrupy pan mixture over it if you’d like! Drizzle the glaze over the pear, making sure to add lots of almonds. Garnish with a swoop (that is the technical term, by the way) of maple cream and a grating of nutmeg.
Totally easy and totally decadent. The caramelization of the pears helps to off-set the sweetness of the maple, and leaving your cream spiced but not too sweet also adds a touch of savoury to this dish. For anyone who isn’t five months pregnant :-), you can serve this with a late-harvest Riesling or Vidal, or even a cider. I would recommend a dessert wine that still has a touch of dryness to it, rather than an ultra-sweet option (like an ice wine). But if you have guests with major sweet teeth, by all means bring on the sugar!
Of course, feel free to pin and share this recipe as you wish – I hope it inspires you to give our Canadian liquid gold room in your pantry this spring.
I’m so glad to be back to blogging with this post. I’ve really been in a pregnancy-exhaustion rut lately, but now that I’m 20 weeks along, I’m finally feeling my energy return somewhat! I’ll be back next week with a neat decor post, and I’m also participating in this month’s Create & Share Challenge. Lots to look forward to!
Have a wonderful week!
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I linked up at Fiesta Friday!