Now autumn is here it is definitely the time for delicious warming buttery crumbles. This recipe is so comforting it is like being given a hug. This recipe is a hybrid of two classics the French whole poached pear with a chocolate sauce known as poires belle helen and a traditional apple crumble.
First, poach the pears. Put 200g caster sugar and 500ml water in a pan. Peel the pears and put them in the pan, bring them slowly to a simmer and continue to simmer for 5 mins. Turn off the heat and allow to cool in the syrup.
Mix the flour, oats, light brown sugar, butter, cinnamon, ginger and butter in a bowl or food processor. Bake on a baking tray 180C/160C/Gas 4 for 30-40 minutes turn the mix every 10 mins until crisp and golden.
Peel and dice the apples, removing the core. Then put in a pan with the remaining 40g caster sugar and 1 tbsp of the pear poaching liquor and slowly cook for 10 mins until broken down into an apple compote.
You can make these into individual portions of one big if you prefer. Place the apple compote in the bottom of a heatproof bowl and put the poached pear in so it stands up then surround the pear in the crumble mix. Return to the oven for 10-12 mins until hot.
While the crumble is finishing in the oven make the chocolate sauce by taking 200ml of the pear poaching liquid and gently return to the heat whisking in the dark chocolate a little at a time until all melted.
Carefully take the crumble from the oven and serve with lashings of the warm glossy chocolate sauce. If your feeling extra naughty a scoop of vanilla ice cream is always welcome.
You can make the whole crumble and chocolate sauce in advance and reheat when needed.
The chocolate sauce will last for a week in the fridge. Just slowly re-heat with a little of the pear liquid to bring it back together.
I like to bake the crumble topping separately for extra crunchiness, so it resembles buttery granola.