It’s the most wonderful time of the year! And what better way to celebrate than with our first Christmas Recipe Advent Countdown! 9 days to go...
Our second Christmas countdown recipe - Almond Pears!
These beautiful delicacies are traditionally made in Greek islands such as Hydra and Mytilini. They are a celebratory treat offered at weddings and christenings. At christenings, we pin a pink or blue bow with a clove to the pears.
I always make a platter of Amigthalota Ahlathia (Almond Pears) for Christmas. I learnt to make these from my neighbours Milton and Dimi, as he is from Mytilini. Milton’s sister Alexandra also makes them.
Today I present on GCT, how to make the most delicious Almond Pears.
- 1 kg almonds, blanched, dried and ground
- 3 tbsp fine semolina
- 3 egg whites
- 3 tbsp honey
- 1 cup of rosewater
- 2 cups of caster sugar
- 25 g packet of vanilla sugar
- 2 cups of pure icing sugar
- cloves (as garnish)
- Dry the blanched almonds in the oven, then grind them finely in a food processor. Combine the egg whites (lightly beaten with a fork), almonds, semolina, caster and vanilla sugars, and half the rosewater in a bowl, and mix to make a pliable paste. Allow this mixture to rest overnight.
- The next day, knead the paste again while adding in the honey. If the paste is too dry, add a little more rosewater. If it is too wet and can’t be moulded, add a little more semolina.
- Preheat your oven to 180 ̊C.
- Mould small amounts of the paste into pear-like shapes and add a clove on top. Bake for 15–20 minutes.
- Once out of the oven, brush with rosewater and thoroughly cover with icing sugar.