Monday, September 19, 2011
Cream Cheese-Stuffed Poached Pears & Chocolate
Oh we're getting fancy up in here! Well, as fancy as I know how to be right now.
I recently got the chance to sample some Ghirardelli Intense Dark Chocolates through the Foodbuzz Tastemaker's program. So I decided to whip up something simple and elegant - and honestly, I just wanted to play around in the kitchen!
4 pears, peeled, cored, and quartered
1 liter water
1/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup cream cheese
1/8 cup brown sugar
12 oz. can evaporated milk
12 oz. Ghirardelli 72% Cacao Twilight Delight, chopped
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
pinch of salt
Place pears in a medium saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a low boil under medium heat. Stir in honey and cinnamon. Poach the pears for about 20-25 minutes, stirring occasionally. Make sure that the pears don't float up above the water or they will cook unevenly and brown from being exposed to the air. Remove pears from liquid and place on a paper towel-lined plate to dry.
To make the filling, combine cream cheese and brown sugar in small bowl until smooth. Match pear halves by size. Spread about 1 rounded tablespoon cream cheese mixture on cut side of one pear half; press cut side of second pear half into cream cheese. Repeat with remaining pears.
For the chocolate sauce, heat evaporated milk to boiling in a medium saucepan. Stir in chocolate. Cook, stirring constantly, until mixture is slightly thickened and smooth. Remove from heat and stir in the brown sugar, vanilla, and salt.
Playfully arrange the stuffed pears, as well as some without any stuffing, on a plate.
The chocolate was absolutely delicious. I'm not really that big of a fan of dark chocolate, but combined with the refreshing pears and rich cream cheese filling, it really hit the spot. It was a simple after-dinner dessert that really impressed both Andy and I!
Hope you guys have a great Monday!
*I was provided free samples of Ghirardelli's new line of Intense Dark Chocolates through the Foodbuzz Tastemaker's Program, but all opinions expressed in this post are my own.