Pears A La Joinville
|Sugar||3⁄4 Cup (12 tbs)|
|Milk||1 1⁄2 Cup (24 tbs)|
|Light cream||1 Cup (16 tbs)|
|Vanilla bean/1 tea spoon vanilla extract||2 Inch|
|Pear halves||2 , poached|
1. Preheat oven to slow (300° F.).
2. Melt three-quarters cup sugar in a heavy saucepan, stirring constantly, until smooth and caramel-colored. Pour into a nine-inch ring mold and let stand until set.
3. In a saucepan scald the milk and cream with the vanilla bean.
4. Combine the eggs and egg yolks in a large bowl and beat until fluffy. Add one-quarter cup sugar and the salt and beat until thick and lemon-colored.
5. Remove the vanilla bean, if used, from the milk. If a bean is not used add the extract. Gradually pour the milk into the egg mixture, beating constantly until thoroughly mixed. Pour the custard mixture through a fine strainer into the ring mold and set the mold in a baking pan. Fill the pan with hot water to within three-quarters inch of the top of the mold.
6. Bake one and one-quarter hours, or until a silver knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove from the water and cool quickly on a wire rack or ice to prevent overcooking and separation. Refrigerate until cold.
7. When ready to serve, unmold on a serving plate and fill the center with fresh pear halves that have been poached until tender in sugar syrup flavored with vanilla.
8. If desired, garnish with whipped cream, candied cherries and pistachio nuts.