Pears Belle Helen

Cook time 30 mins
Servings 3


3 William pears, peeled, left whole and cored (firm but ripe)

1.5L water

1 cup of caster sugar

1 vanilla bean

1 orange peel

1 star anise

Chocolate sauce

125ml milk

125ml cream

1 tbsp sugar

225g dark cooking chocolate

25g butter, cold

3 scoops of good quality vanilla bean ice cream

100g Almond flakes – toasted

Pears Belle Helen


Bring to the boil the water, sugar, vanilla, orange, and star anise. Turn the heat down and simmer for 5 minutes. Now add the pears and place a cartouche (baking paper cut into circle, with a small hole in centre) on top. Gently poach for 5 minutes. Carefully pour the pears and the liquid into a bowl, ensuring the pears are submerged in the liquid and chill completely.

When ready to serve, make the chocolate sauce. Bring to the boil the milk, cream and sugar. Remove from the heat and add the chocolate. Constantly stir until all of the chocolate has melted. Now incorporate the butter.

To serve, place the pears in shallow bowls, with a scoop of ice cream, a drizzle of chocolate sauce and a sprinkle of nuts.