Brioche French toast with caramelised pears
- 4 large free-range eggs
- 4 tbsp maple syrup
- ½ vanilla pod, cut in half lengthways and seeds scraped out
- pinch of salt
- 100g/3½oz demerara sugar, plus 1 tbsp for the caramelised pears
- 50g/1¾oz pecan nuts
- 60g/2¼oz unsalted butter
- 4 slices brioche
- 3 conference pears, peeled, cored and cut into thick slices
- 75g/2½oz stem ginger in syrup, finely chopped
- 100ml/3½fl oz syrup, reserved from the stem ginger
- 4 tbsp crème fraîche
- 1 unwaxed lemon, zest and a little juice
- icing sugar, for dusting
Whisk the eggs, maple syrup, vanilla seeds and a pinch of salt together in a large bowl.
For the caramelised pecans, heat the sugar in a small pan until it turns a deep caramel colour (CAUTION: boiling sugar is extremely hot. Handle very carefully. Use a deep pan to avoid bubbling over.). Add the nuts and stir well to coat. Pour the mixture onto a baking tray lined with non-stick baking paper. Leave to cool and harden for a few minutes, then chop into pieces.
Melt 50g/1¾oz butter in a large non-stick frying pan. Dip the brioche slices into the egg mixture then pan fry in the butter for 2-3 minutes on each side, or until golden brown.
Heat the remaining butter in a non-stick pan and add the sliced pear, reserving four slices for a garnish. Add a tablespoon of sugar to the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes. Then add the chopped ginger and syrup. Cook for a further 1-2 minutes until the liquid has reduced and the pears have caramelised.
Arrange the toasted brioche on four plates, top with the caramelised pears and fresh pear slices, crème fraiche and a squeeze of lemon and zest. Scatter with chopped pecans and dust with icing sugar.