If there is one thing that we love to do at head office it is to eat. We relish the opportunity to celebrate any occasion (St Georges Day anyone?!), and with the diverse backgrounds of our team, we love nothing more than to try new cuisines and dine as a team.
So when we discovered that the delicious Saga was right at our inner west doorstep, we knew we had to sample one of everything on the menu. Saga is the brainchild of renowned chef, Andy Bowdy, the mastermind behind those incredible cakes that you would no doubt have seen on Instagram. Cascading meringue, sticky toffee, edible flowers, caramel dripping down the sides. You know the ones.
Of course it’s handy to buy from Andy, but spending time in your own kitchen can be heavenly, so here’s how to replicate one of his sumptuous desserts at home:
CARAMELISED PEAR AND BOURBON TURNOVERS
5 Packham pears, peeled, cored
300g caster sugar
1 vanilla bean, split, seeds scraped
150ml bourbon whiskey
1/4 cup (60ml) sunflower oil
1/2 cup (75g) pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
300ml pure (thin) cream
175g brown sugar
750g puff pastry (we used Carême All Butter Puff Pastry)
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 tbsp demerara sugar
Cut the pears into eighths. Place the sugar and 1/2 cup (125ml) water in a large deep frypan over medium heat. Swirl pan to dissolve sugar, then cook, without stirring, for 12 minutes or until a light caramel. Add the pear and vanilla pod and seeds, and gently stir to coat.
Cook, swirling the pan occasionally, for 15 minutes or until the caramel is dark and the pear is tender. Carefully add the bourbon, stirring to combine, then cook, swirling, for a further 5 minutes or until slightly reduced.
Heat the sunflower oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the pepitas and cook, stirring occasionally, for 6-8 minutes or until golden. Remove using a slotted spoon and drain on paper towel. Season with salt.
Place cream, mascarpone and brown sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment. Whisk to stiff peaks and chill until needed.
Preheat the oven to 200°C.
Place pastry on a clean work surface and cut out 8 x 14cm rounds. Fold each round in half, placing a small square of baking paper between the fold so the pastry doesn’t stick together. Brush pastry with egg and scatter tops with demerara sugar. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden and cooked through.
Remove paper and pipe in brown sugar cream. Top with pears, sprinkle with pepitas and drizzle with caramel to serve.
Recipe from Delicious