Tag Archives: apple juice

Poached Pears with Almond Pralines

3 Feb

This is an awesome dessert…  I love fruity desserts much more than cakes or other baked goods.  And even though pears are not something you can grow here in Puerto Rico, most every supermarket has them on sale these days.  I saw some lovely Bartlett pears on sale the other day and thought it would be the perfect opportunity to re-create a recipe I had originally learned last year at the Conscious Gourmet Cooking seminar Poached Pears with Almond Pralines.

The original recipe called for Bosc pears, but they were so much smaller than the Bartletts that I decided to go for size and beauty.  The recipe turned out perfectly, IMHO.

And the Almond Pralines – this is awesome!!!! They’re the perfect accompaniment to these pears or a great snack all by itself.  They would taste great on top of ice cream or yogurt drizzled with a bit of caramel sauce…  mmmmm!!!!  I feel another craving coming up.



3 cups unsweetened organic apple juice
2 tbs maple syrup
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch of ground cloves or a few whole cloves
pinch of ginger
6-8 Bartlett or Bosc pears – peeled, halved and cored
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F. 
  2. Combine all ingredients, except pears, in a roasting pan.  Set pears in the poaching liquid. 
  3. Bake in oven for 45 minutes. 
  4. Check the pears for doneness – they should be soft when pricked with a knife. 
  5. Remove the pears from poaching liquid and transfer them to a separate dish.
  6. Transfer the poaching liquid to a skillet or wide saucepan and boil until the liquid is reduced by half.
  7. Serve by placing one pear half on a dish, drizzle with the reduced poaching liquid and sprinkle with Almond Pralines.  recipe below…

I have a confession to make… the original recipe calls for you to cover the roasting pan and bake covered.  I did not notice that in the recipe and forgot.  The results were good too…  I just had to leave them a few more minutes in and increased the temperature to 425 degrees and left them an additional 15 minutes.  They should be done by then.


1 cup sliced almonds – but slivered or chopped almonds would work too
1 tbs maple syrup
1 tbs maple sugar
  1. Combine all ingredients in a mixing bowl.
  2. Transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. 
  3. Bake in a 350 degrees oven for 15 minutes until golden brown – you can take advantage of the same oven you’re making the pears in.
  4. Transfer IMMEDIATELY into a metal bowl to cool off and crisp up.

Strawberry Kanten

23 Dec

This is a recipe I learned from Diane Carlson while at a cooking retreat called the Conscious Gourmet back in April of this year.  I made some wonderful friends and learned some awesome recipes, this being one of them.  Among the wonderful friends, my friend Kathleen from Kathleen’s Vegetarian Kitchen.

 I learned this is called KANTEN because that’s another name of the agar-agar in the recipe. It’s an easy recipe, but you need time to make it… you’ll see why…



4 cups apple juice – Knudsen’s organic brand is highly recommended
1/4 cup agar flakes
1 tablespoon roasted almond butter
dash of lemon juice
pinch of sea salt
2 cups strawberries
1 tablespoons maple syrup or to taste
  1. Place apple juice and agar flakes in a medium saucepan.  Set aside for 15 minutes so the agar flakes start to dissolve a bit in the juice.  Bring liquid to a boil, lower heat and gently simmer for 5 minutes or until agar is completely dissolved.
  2. Pour the hot kanten into a metal bowl or metal baking dish and place in freezer until very firmly set.
  3. Slice 1/2 cup of strawberries for garnish.  Puree the remaining strawberries in a blender with maple syrup and salt.  Strain the strawberries through a fine sieve to remove as many seeds as possible.
  4. When the kanten is fully solidified, break it up into a food processor.  Add the almond butter, lemon juice and salt and puree until smooth. Layer kanten and strawberry sauce in parfait glasses.  Garnish with remaining strawberries.

It’s important to use the metal bowl to help the kanten solidify faster.  Depending on how cold your freezer is, this part will take at least 2 hours.

 The color of the apple juice you use will definitely affect the color of your kanten.  The Conscious Gourmet version was made with Knudsen’s apple juice.  The version I did on  my own was made with Mott’s Natural apple juice, therefore, this latter version was beiger, while the Knudsen version is pinkier.


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