17 May 2014

PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP - A CINNAMON-SWEET FRUIT PUZZLE

PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP
Imagine Baklava but without the sicklish-sweet stickiness (yes, I know, nothing wrong with that!)... Imagine APFELSTRUDEL, but laid out flat, so that every layer of pastry turns into crispy magic. Imagine sheets of precious, thin, crunchy, buttery filo pastry between layers of sugary cinnamon-scented nuts and breadcrumbs. 
PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP
And a little fruit with every bite... In other words: apple-filo-cake-heaven... and our latest addiction...  :-) 

PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP
Serve on their own, at room-temperature or even better: warm just 5 minutes out of the oven; with afternoon coffee, or as dessert with caramel or vanilla ice-cream... yum! And it looks so pretty, like a sweet, edible pear-and-apple-puzzle. Yum! Yum, yum! Yum!!! :-) 
PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP
The crisp is very easy and fast to put together, but make sure to peel the apples before slicing them, as their skin will roll up during baking (this is not an issue with the pears). Also, the second time I made the crisp I sprinkled considerably more cinnamon and brown sugar on top and left the cake in the oven a little longer. This way the sugar caramelized nicely on top and the crisp turned out even more crunchy and tasty. I have made the crisp according to the original recipe with apples, pears and pecans, but also with apples and hazelnuts. Must try other fruit, almonds, pistachios... no end in sight yet... sigh!   ;-)
PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP
Recipe Source: Pear and Apple Phyllo Crisp, Martha Stewart
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Makes 8 pieces

½ cup = 70g pecans, (toasted, if you like) and finely chopped
⅓ cup = 40g breadcrumbs
¼ cup = 60g sugar
½ to 1 tsp ground cinnamon, plus more for dusting
6 sheets frozen Filo (Phyllo) pastry sheets, thawed
110g (1 stick butter) butter, melted
1-2 small firm pears
1-2 Granny Smith apples, peeled!
1-2 Tbsp brown sugar to sprinkle on top
(You will need more or less fruit, depending if you only use the pretty slices around the core or the whole fruit. When I use only the core slices, I sprinkle the remaining slices with a little lemon juice and keep them in a plastic container in the fridge for my smoothie the next day.)
PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP
Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°Fan/400°F. Chop the nuts. (Optional: roast them in the oven or a dry frying pan beforehand for additional flavour.)
PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP
Combine the chopped nuts, breadcrumbs, sugar and cinnamon. Melt the butter. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Layer five of the six filo sheets and the whole nut mix as follows: lay the first filo sheet on the lined baking tray (cover the remaining filo sheets with a damp kitchen towel to prevent them from drying out), then brush with the melted butter. Careful, the edges can tear easily, so brush from the centre outwards if necessary. Sprinkle 1/5 of the nut mix evenly on top, and all the way to the boarder. Create four more layers like this until all the nuts are used up and you are left with one filo sheet.  
PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP
Put the last filo sheet on top, brush with all but 2 Tbsp of butter. Slice the pears and peeled apples 3mm (⅛ inch) thick, discard the seeds. Arrange the pear and apple slices in a single layer on top of the Filo, leaving space between the fruit and a small border around the edges. Brush with the remaining butter. Sprinkle generously with brown sugar and cinnamon. 
PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP
Bake for app. 30 minutes, rotating the sheet after 15 minutes, until the Filo is golden brown and the fruit soft.
PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP
Leave to cool slightly. Cut into 8 pieces with a long sharp knife, aligning the knife and then slicing down in one quick move to avoid the pastry from 'shattering'. 
PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP
PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP


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PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP



PEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISPPEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISPPEAR AND APPLE FILO CRISP

Makes 8 pieces

½ cup = 70g pecans, (toasted, if you like) and finely chopped
⅓ cup = 40g breadcrumbs
¼ cup = 60g sugar
½ to 1 tsp ground cinnamon, plus more for dusting
6 sheets frozen Filo (Phyllo) pastry sheets, thawed
110g (1 stick butter) butter, melted
1-2 small firm pears
1-2 Granny Smith apples, peeled!
1-2 Tbsp brown sugar to sprinkle on top
(You will need more or less fruit, depending if you only use the pretty slices around the core, or the whole fruit.)

Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°Fan/400°F. Chop the nuts. Combine nuts, breadcrumbs, sugar and cinnamon. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Melt the butter. Layer five of the six filo sheets and the whole nut mix as follows: lay the first filo sheet on the lined baking sheet (cover the remaining filo sheets with a kitchen towel to prevent them from drying out), then brush all over with the melted butter? Sprinkle 1/5 of the nut mixture on top. Create four  more layers like this. Top with the remaining Filo sheet, brush with all but 2 Tbsp of butter. Slice the pears and peeled apples 3mm (⅛ inch) thick, discard the seeds. Arrange the pear and apple slices in a single layer on top of the Filo, leaving space between the fruit and a small border around the edges. Brush with the remaining butter. Sprinkle generously with brown sugar and cinnamon. Bake for app. 30 minutes, rotating the sheet after 15 minutes, until the Filo is golden brown and the fruit soft. Leave to cool slightly. Cut into 8 pieces.
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