Pears with Hazelnut Cream
3/4 cup roasted, skinned and salted hazelnuts (3 ounces), chopped
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, plus more for dusting
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
2 teaspoons amaretto liqueur
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 large egg, chilled
2 large, ripe Bartlett pears
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- In a food processor, finely grind 1/2 cup of the hazelnuts. Transfer to a bowl. Add the confectioners’ sugar and butter and beat at medium-high speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the amaretto and vanilla and beat for 1 minute. Add the egg and beat until incorporated.
- Place a piece of parchment paper on a sheet pan. Spread the hazelnut cream on the paper, about 1/2 inch thick.
- Peel, halve and core the pears. Slice each pear half lengthwise 1/4 inch thick; spread them into fans. Brush with lemon juice. Using a spatula, transfer the pear fans to the pan and place on top of the cream. Dust the pears with confectioners’ sugar. Bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until the hazelnut cream is set and nicely browned.
- Using a spatula, transfer the cream and pear to the Croccantini. Dust with confectioners’ sugar and scatter the remaining 1/4 cup of chopped hazelnuts over the top. Serve right away.