Poached pears with coconut chocolate sauce

Poached pears with coconut chocolate sauce

By
From
The Sugar Hit!
Serves
4
Photographer
Chris Middleton

Poached pears and chocolate sauce is a classic French dessert called poires belle Hèlène. This is my updated version, which uses a simple honey syrup to poach the pears and replaces the cream in the sauce with coconut milk. What you end up with not only skips the refined sugar and dairy, but it is also more fragrant, a little lighter and has more depth of favour than the original. I love how this dessert is somehow both comforting and chic at the same time.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
4 pears, (williams pears are great, but any will work)
80ml honey
1 vanilla bean, split lengthways and seeds scraped, pod reserved

Coconut chocolate sauce

Quantity Ingredient
100g dark chocolate, (70% cocoa solids)
125ml coconut milk

Method

  1. Peel the pears, slice them in half lengthways and remove the cores. (I find it easiest to gouge them out with a teaspoon. A melon baller would be perfect, but who owns a melon baller?)
  2. Put the pears in a deep, wide saucepan in which they fit snugly, then add enough water to cover – about 750 ml. Add the honey, vanilla pod and seeds. Bring to the boil over medium heat, then reduce the heat to low and simmer until the pears are tender – anywhere from 5 to 20 minutes depending on their ripeness.
  3. Once the pears are done, you can either serve them hot or leave them to cool and chill them overnight in their syrup.
  4. To make the coconut chocolate sauce, break up the chocolate and put it in a small saucepan with the coconut milk. Melt gently over low heat, stirring, until it comes together in a glossy black sauce.
  5. Serve the pears, warm or cold, drizzled with as much of the chocolate sauce as you like! This is also amazing with ice cream.

Tip

  • If you’re making this for a vegan friend, you can easily replace the honey with maple syrup, for an equally delicious dish.
Tags:
sugar
hit
cake
cakes
baking
sweet
sweets
dessert
sarah
coates
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