Author Notes: A pear chip appetizer or hors d'oeuvre seemed like a logical extension into my forays with frying pears. After trying all different blades and settings on the mandolin, my best recommendation is to use the smooth blade on the thinnest setting. Increase amounts of all ingredients to serve a crowd. - Bevi
Food52 Review: Bevi has taken some of our favorite flavors and combined them to make an utterly irresistible dish. Sage leaves and pear slices are gently fried until crisp and then served with a creamy gorgonzola dip that's enhanced by a poached pear syrup. We mashed the poached pear from the syrup into the dip to boost the pear flavor a bit, and because we had some on hand, used pear vodka instead of pear brandy in the poaching liquid. The sage leaves and wafer thin pear chips tend to be a bit fragile, so don't treat them like corn chips! All in all, perfect with a glass (or two) of Champagne!
For the Fried Pears and Sage
- 4 pears, under ripe, sliced thinly using a mandolin if possible
- 24 beautiful and large sage leaves
- Your choice oil for frying - I used canola, but don't recommend olive oil
- Sea salt to taste
For the Dip
- 7 ounces Greek Yogurt, whole or 2%
- 4 ounces creamed gorgonzola cheese - mush it with the back of a spoon
- 1 tablespoon poached pear syrup - see NB below
- Make the dip. Combine the creamed gorgonzola, the yogurt, and the pear syrup. Place a dollop in 4 individual ramekins or small dishes, or center all the dip in a decorative, larger bowl.
- Place enough oil in a large frying pan to cover the sage and pear slices. Heat until the oil is sizzling, and regulate the heat on medium. Meanwhile, pat dry the pear slices.
- Place the sage leaves, in batches so they are not crowded, into the hot oil. Fry for about a minute. Place the fried sage leaves on a sheet tray covered with paper towels. Salt lightly.
- Now fry the pear slices, taking care to regulate the heat so the edges of the slices do not cook faster. Keep turning the chips until they are a golden brown. Remove from oil, and place on paper towels. Salt very lightly.
- Let the sage and chips dry a little, and then stick them into the dip.
- NB - For the Pear Poaching Liquid, Add 1 cup sugar to 1 cup water in a one quart saucepan. Stir until the sugar is dissolved, and bring to a light boil. Reduce the heat, and add 1 tablespoon of pear brandy to the poaching liquid, if you have some. Let simmer for about 10 minutes. Peel a pear, halve it lengthwise, and add it to the poaching liquid. Cook for about 5 minutes, and you can use the pear with another recipe, or mash the pear into the dip. Cook down the poaching liquid further until it is a syrupy consistency. Let cool before use.