It’s been a bumper year for fruit. There’s crates of pears in the spare room, and little piles of rosy red apples all along the windowsills. The whole house smells like pear and apple crumble! I’ve never managed to reach the top of the fruit trees before. Our old ladders were too wobbly. But this year I’ve a fabulous new addition to the garden- a Henchman tripod ladder. It’s made everything easier – and safer. All the best, tastiest fruit- always at the top of the tree- has been harvested. This year, more than ever, it feels as if nothing should be wasted. Spare fruit has been distributed to friends and family in little paper bags. Damaged, over-ripe fruit has been enjoyed by hedgehogs and blackbirds, so wildlife has not been forgotten either.
One of our favourite autumn recipes is Pear and Almond Pastries. As usual, just a few ingredients are needed, and the little parcels of tasty pears only take minutes to make. Have a go at making them, and let me know how you get on.
1 pack of ready rolled puff pastry
3 or 4 ripe pears
1 tbsp dark brown sugar
3 tbsp ground almonds
1 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2tbsp flaked almonds for the top
1 egg, beaten (optional- use almond milk for vegans)
Icing sugar for dusting (optional)
Baking tray with baking paper or silicone sheet.
190C oven 15-20 minutes
Unroll the pastry and cut into squares. Lay them on the baking tray.
Peel and halve the pears. Place slices on top of the pastry squares.
In a bowl, mix the sugar, ground almonds, ground cloves, cinnamon together. Pile spoonfuls of the mixture on top of the pears.
Take the corners of the pastry and draw them together to make a rough parcel. The pastries will stretch and turn out all shapes, and it doesn’t matter. They will still taste the same.
Brush the top with beaten egg (or almond milk) and sprinkle over the flaked almonds.
Cook in a preheated oven for 15 -20 minutes. Check them after 10 minutes to see how brown they are. The pastries will be ready when they are risen and light brown. They burn easily, so keep an eye on them. 20 minutes might be too long for fast ovens. Dust with icing sugar, if you have some.
Can be eaten cold or warm. Can be frozen for 3 months. Delicious with clotted cream, or custard. We also love them with home-made vanilla icecream.
Thanks for reading. Have a great gardening week and keep in touch.
Links: Henchman ladders https://www.henchman.co.uk/
Fruit trees: Six Acre Nursery, Costock, Leicestershire.
Silicone sheets are reusable from http://www.kitchenrangecookshop.com/
Photos above show two packets of puff pastry.