An exquisite chocolate dessert from Laurie Gear, this galette recipe includes poached pears, caramelised white chocolate and a rich pastry cream. Some steps of this recipe are a little fiddly but the end result is well worth the effort. You can make the pastry cream and caremelised white chocolate a day ahead of time, so that you can focus later on making the pastry and poaching the pears.
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Preheat the oven to 120°C/gas mark 1/2
Scatter the white chocolate over a shallow, wide baking tin and place in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove and even out the melted chocolate with a spatula
150g of white chocolate, broken into pieces
Return to the oven for 30-60 minutes, re-spreading the chocolate every 10 minutes. Eventually, the chocolate will be smooth and caramelised - do not panic it's lumpy at first
If after 60 minutes the chocolate is still a bit lumpy, transfer to a blender and blitz until smooth. Store in a jar until needed
To make the pastry cream, place the milk and cream in a heavy bottomed pan. Add the vanilla seeds, scraped out vanilla pod and apricot jam and bring to the boil. Meanwhile, whisk the egg yolks and whole eggs with the sugar and cornflour
300ml of cream
700ml of milk
1/2 vanilla pod
6 egg yolks
80g of cornflour
2 tbsp of apricot jam
150g of caster sugar
When the liquid is on the point of boiling, pour onto the egg mixture, whisking continuously. Return this mixture to the pan and cook on a low heat until it thickens
Remove from the heat and allow to cool, before keeping in the fridge to chill
To make the pastry sheets for the galette, lay out one piece of filo pastry on a baking tray, brush with the melted butter and sprinkle with icing sugar. Place 3 more layers of filo pastry on top, repeating the brushing and sprinkling process for each layer to make one multi-layered sheet
100g of icing sugar
4 sheets of filo pastry
Preheat the oven to 220°C/gas mark 7. Cut the sheet into 8 oblongs, then sandwich the pastry sheets between two baking sheets lined with greaseproof paper. Bake for 4-6 minutes or until golden brown
Poach the peeled pears in a pan of water with the sugar, star anise, split vanilla pod, juice of half a lemon, 6 coriander seeds and a cinnamon stick, until soft
500ml of water
400g of caster sugar
1 star anise
1 vanilla pod, split
6 coriander seeds
1 cinnamon stick
2 conference pears
Place a blob of the caramelised white chocolate on the plate and smear across with the back of a wet spoon for decoration. Place an oblong of filo pasty on a plate, pipe some of the pastry cream onto the pastry, a layer of melted chocolate (by way of cement) then some slices of poached pear, top with another layer of pastry
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