Human creativity is mind-boggling, isn’t it? And never before have we had access to so many creative ideas. Of course all this is wonderful, but it can be so overwhelming as we sift through image, after pin, after post, trying to decide what we want to do with those plump, juicy pears that we just picked up at the market. I will be honest with you, I have been eyeing this recipe for a few years now in, ”The Girls Who Dish, Seconds Anyone?” by Karen Barnaby et al. Finally, this week I got off my butt to challenge my baking skills. I was really worried that it would be difficult to wrap the pears in the biscotti and that I would end up with a crumbly mess on the bottom of the oven, but this recipe is deceptively simple. The cookie dough is very forgiving, and you will feel like an accomplished sculptor as you create this impressive dessert! What’s not to love about it? Sweet pears, wrapped in fragrant biscotti, filled with fluffy mascarpone, on a bed of caramelly dulce de leche. Ahh, heaven!
I will be sharing this post with everyone at Fiesta Friday this week. I have the honour of co-hosting Angie’s mind-boggling blog party this week with Zeba of Food for the Soul. You must check out her very delicious site. Please come and join us! We promise you endless amounts of creativity to feast your eyes on! Check out the guidelines here.
Mascarpone Stuffed Biscotti Pears with Dulce de Leche
¼ cup unsalted butter, softened
6 tablespoons sugar
½ teaspoon anise seed
¼ teaspoon orange zest
1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
pinch sea salt
1/3 cup finely chopped toasted hazelnuts
4 firm pears with long stems
½ cup mascarpone cheese
dulce de leche
In a medium bowl, beat together the butter and 5 tablespoons of the sugar. Add the egg, anise seed, orange zest, and vanilla extract. In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, baking power, salt and hazelnuts. Add it to the creamed butter and mix to form a dough. Divide the dough into 4 equal portions and wrap in plastic and set aside.
Peel the pears, leaving the stems intact. Use a melon baller to scoop out the cores of the pears. Slice a bit off the bottom of the pears so that they will stand up- right in a baking dish. Use a paper towel to dry the outside of the pears.
Preheat the oven to 325°F. Line a baking sheet with non-stick baking paper.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out each portion of biscotti into disks, 1/8 inch thick. Use a small paring knife to cut a small slit into the centre of each disk. Place the stem through the slits in the disks. Mold the dough around each of the pears and pinch the dough around the stems to secure. Patch up any holes or tears as you go. Do not fill the inside of the pears. Leave the core opening bare. Stand the pears up on a baking sheet. Mist the outsides of the pears with water, using a spray bottle. Sprinkle with the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar. Bake the pears until golden brown, about 50 minutes. Transfer carefullu t a cooling rack.
Using a plain tipped nozzle, fill a pastry bag with the mascarpone and pipe into the holes of the pears.
Warm the ducle de leche gently in a microwave oven. Place a generous amount of dulce de leche on each of four plates. Place the pears on each of the plates. Pass extra dulce de leche to serve.