In Greek: αχλάδια με σφολιάτα, say: akh-LAHTH-yah meh sfohl-YAH-tah
This is a delightful - and very easy - dessert or treat to serve with coffee. Pear halves are stuffed with a fabulous mixture of raisins, brown sugar, brandy, and a touch of cinnamon, and then baked on a bed of puff pastry. Hard to resist, and once the pastry has defrosted, it takes less than 30 minutes to make - including baking time. (The most time-consuming part of this recipe is waiting for the puff pastry (sfoliata) to defrost.)
Try these with ice cream!
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
- 2 pre-cut 4 to 6 inch circles of puff pastry (or 1 sheet of frozen puff pastry) defrosted
- 1 pear
- 1 tablespoon of raisins (about 20-22 raisins)
- 1 tablespoon of brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon of melted butter
- tiny amount (tip of a teaspoon) of ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon of brandy
- 1/2 teaspoon of granulated sugar
Make sure puff pastry is at room temperature.
- If using a sheet of puff pastry, unfold when fully defrosted to room temperature, and cut two 4-to-6 inch circles out of the pastry using a bowl (or other tool) as a guide. The size of the circles isn't important - they just need to be large enough to leave a little rim of dough around the pear.
Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C).
Combine raisins, brown sugar, cinnamon, brandy, and melted butter in a small bowl and mix to combine completely until the liquid is fully absorbed. The filling will be moist and stick together nicely.
Peel pears and cut in half, lengthwise. Scoop out hard core and seeds, and fill the cavities with the filling. Pat filling in, and place each pear half on top of a pastry circle, centered, filling side down.
Score the tops of the pear halves in several places (to prevent their breaking open during baking), and, optionally, cut the edges of the pastry that extend out from the bottom for a decorative touch.
For this photo, I used my kitchen scissors to make little cuts into the pastry all the way around the pear.
Sprinkle a little granulated sugar over the top and bake on an ungreased cookie sheet at 350°F (175°C) for 15-25 minutes, until pastry is nicely browned (baking time will depend on individual ovens). The pastry will puff up (hence, the name) around the pear.
Yield: serves 2
Which pear variety to use? For the photo, I used green Anjou pears because they seem to be widely available most of the year, but any variety works well. Choose your favorite.
Serving suggestions: Delicious with ice cream, or with a selection of dessert cheeses on the side. This is a wonderful dessert to end a romantic meal or, multiply the recipe and impress a houseful of guests.