A soft poached pear infused with vanilla bean and cardamom with a rich hot chocolate sauce
Peel the pears leaving the stalk on. Slice off a thin disk from the bottom of the pear so that it can stand upright. Then from the bottom, remove the core, being careful not to pierce the flesh.
In a saucepan large enough to stand the pears in, boil the sugar and water. Then add the vanilla pod and the cardamon and reduce to a simmer.
Place the pears upright in the pan and cook for 20 minutes until tender (use a cocktail stick to make sure it's cooked all the way through).
When the pears are cooked, remove the pan from the heat and allow the pears to sit in the syrup until ready to serve so they absorb the flavour of the vanilla and the spice.
Place the cream in a pan until it boils, when it comes to the boil, remove from the heat and gradually mix in the chocolate. The sauce should be shiny and smooth. If there are any lumps, place the pan back on the heat and whisk, then pass through a sieve.
Place the warm pear onto a plate and drizzle with the warm chocolate sauce.
«Use comice or conference pears as they keep their shape better when cooked.»