A little off-piste post today. It’s my birthday and, well, it’s all about the treats. First, a little light baking: Dan Lepard‘s delicious and never-before-tried sugar-crusted pear turnovers. Easy-peasy and just yum with a homemade latte. No, I didn’t spend hours folding my own puff pastry (sorry Dan) although he does make it sound very simple; these are still lovely with a bit of Jus-Rol. Then, later on, there will be a trip to toast the Lego Christmas tree at St Pancras with some champers, followed by dinner at Moro. Somewhere inbetween I have to queue in the Post Office to send Christmas pressies and cards to far-flung places (the bane of a December birthday) but, no matter, that will all be forgotten by the time I’m indulging in a fizzy glass or two. I encourage you to try these, birthday or no; they’ll take you about thirty minutes but you’ll remember them for a lot longer. Back to normal tomorrow!
Pear turnovers (adapted from Short and Sweet)
Makes about six
Cupboard, or things you may already have
a little plain flour, for rolling
caster sugar, 25g
egg, about ½ for brushing the pastry (odd, I know, but you won’t need all of it)
ground cinnamon, a pinch
ready-made puff pastry, 375g
ripe pears, about 400g (two largish ones)
Demerara sugar, a few teaspoons
1. Line a flat baking sheet with baking parchment and preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan-assisted/gas 6.
2. Juice the ½ lemon.
3. In a small bowl mix the Demerara sugar with the cinnamon then break the egg into another small bowl and beat lightly.
4. Peel and core the pears, then chop into small dice and put into a bowl with the lemon juice. Stir to mix.
5. Tip the pears into a sieve over the sink/a bowl and leave to drain for a few minutes.
6. Lightly flour a counter/chopping board and roll the pastry out on it to a thickness of about ½cm then cut out 15cm-diameter circles (I used a small cereal bowl). Place these on the baking sheet.
7. Put a good tablespoonful of the chopped pears into the middle of each circle (leaving 2cm between them and the edge), dampen the edges of the pastry circles with a little egg to help them stick then fold them in half and press the edges together to seal them.
8. Brush each turnover with beaten egg, sprinkle with the sugar-cinnamon mix, cut two slits in the top of each one and bake for about 25 minutes until golden. Serve whilst warm.