Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Just Between You and Me...These Fruit Chips are Easy to Make
When I was a teenager, one of my favorite albums was April Wine’s The Nature of the Beast. It contained some of the bands biggest hits like Sign of the Gypsy Queen and the power ballad Just Between You and Me. I remember listening to this album for hours. I also recall being mesmerized by the album cover that has the beast wailing on an electric guitar. I still regard it as one of the best rock album covers of all time.
Of course it’s not a real beast on the cover but someone dressed up as one. This got me thinking about how garnishes dress up everyday dishes to tantalize our eyes. Chefs use garnishes all the time. I especially love it when they use chips as a topping. I guess that’s why I got all excited when I came across a recipe on how to make chips out of pear and apple slices.
In this particular recipe I’ve used pear slices and dusted them in a mixture of cinnamon, paprika, brown sugar, salt and pepper. You can use whatever spices you like. Choose the ones that rock your world! I used my finished pear chips to dress up a couple plain scoops of frozen yogurt. You could also stack them in the middle of a bowl of thick soup or use them as a finishing touch on an appetizer (especially one that contains cheese).
Let's keep the fact that they are easy to make on the down low. It’s better if our guests think we’ve worked our butts off to create such gourmet style. This weekend I think I’ll revisit April Wine’s The Nature of the Beast while making more fruit chips so all eyes and taste buds can feast!
1 firm ripe Bartlett or Bosc pear, cored and cut into paper thin slices
1/2 tsp brown sugar
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp sweet paprika
Couple pinches each salt and freshly ground pepper
Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
In a small bowl combine, sugar, cinnamon, paprika, salt and pepper. Lightly sprinkle over both sides of pear slices.
Place pear slices on baking sheet in a single layer. Place another sheet of parchment paper on top and set another baking sheet on top of paper to keep pears flat.
In a 275ºF oven, bake pears for 45 minutes. Remove top baking sheet and carefully peel off top piece of parchment. Bake for 10 minutes more (keep an eye on them at this point because if they brown too much they go bitter). Remove from oven and let pear slices cool on a wire rack. They will crisp upon cooling.
Volume: 10 to 15 Chips
* * * *
The Kitchen Roadie