Pears, Gorgonzola, and Walnuts Grace This Puff Pastry, But the real star is the eco.love riesling caramel

eco.love wine is one of the coolest wineries in the world. They are the very first carbon-zero winery which means they are committed to sustainable farming practices, they use the most environmentally sound bottles and inks, and they’re helping to restore the wetlands around their vinyard.

The McBride sisters, Robin and Andrea, run the winery. They generously donated wine for my Thanksgiving celebration and I was thrilled to do a wine pairing for them for the Winter Holidays as well.

The Riesling from eco.love is made from grapes grown in the Nelson and Marlborough region of New Zealand. At first whiff, I get citrus and flowers and upon drinking I’m met with bright flavors of fruit with a hint of spice and a nice acidy finish.  I was immediately struck with the idea to make a Riesling and thyme caramel and the rest of the appetizer just came together from there.

Pears, Gorgonzola, and Walnuts Grace This Puff Pastry, But the real star is the eco.love riesling caramel

  • INGREDIENTS FOR PUFF PASTRY SQUARES
  • 1 package of frozen puff pastry (I like the Trader Joe’s Brand and French Picnic- the Pepperidge Farms uses hydrogenated oils)
  • 1 firm, but ripe pear- cut into tiny matchsticks
  • Gorgonzola cheese for slicing
  • ½ cup walnuts chopped

 

  • INGREDIENTS FOR RIESLING AND THYME CARAMEL
  • 1 cup of eco love Reisling
  • ½ cup of organic WHITE sugar
  • large sprig of fresh thyme
  • 2 tablespoons of butter cut into small pieces
  • good quality sea salt to taste

 

  • INSTRUCTIONS FOR CARAMEL
  • Dissolve sugar in the Riesling over a medium-high flame in a small, but heavy bottomed saucepan stirring once or twice
  • Once the sugar is dissolved, bring to a boil add thyme and reduce to medium watching closely (not stirring) until the mixture turns a dark golden color.
  • Immediately remove from heat and add butter 1 small piece at a time- whisking to incorporate.
  • Whisk in salt

 

  • INSTRUCTIONS FOR PUFF PASTRY SQUARES
  • Preheat oven according to package instructions (usually 400º) and line a cookie sheet (or two) with parchment paper
  • Cut puff pastry into 2 inch squares. Work quickly to avoid getting your dough warm.
  • Put a little bit of pear and a little bit of walnut in the center- then top with a slice of gorzonzola careful to leave room around edges so that pastry will puff up
  • Bake on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet according to package instructions- The edges should be golden brown and quite puffed up
  • Remove from oven and immediately drizzle with a bit of the caramel. Serve warm.

Pears, Gorgonzola, and Walnuts Grace This Puff Pastry, But the real star is the eco.love riesling caramel

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{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

Kori December 28, 2010 at 1:30 PM

These sound decadent and delicious…not to mention they look beautiful! What a great appetizer!

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tiffany December 28, 2010 at 3:51 PM

The Riesling-thyme combination sounds delicious! I love complex flavors that play on all parts of your tongue!

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Wilde in the Kitchen December 29, 2010 at 8:51 AM

These look like such amazing savory-sweet dessert! I'm definitely bookmarking this recipe!

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Heather January 3, 2011 at 2:12 PM

I tried this recipe twice and both times I couldn't get my carmel to thicken. What am I doing wrong Miss Tart??

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sabrinamodel January 3, 2011 at 3:30 PM

You may be taking it off the heat too soon. It should have boiled off quite a bit as it's getting to the dark golden amber color. Also make sure each piece of butter is incorporated with the whisk before adding the next piece. It will be like a caramel sauce not like hard caramel.

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Bunny January 5, 2012 at 11:00 AM

Way too sweet for an appetizer, but looks like a delicious sweet/savory dessert idea!

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Angela December 23, 2013 at 5:10 AM

I made a roasted pear chutney to put on these instead of just pears and it was delicious! The chutney added the savory notes that were needed. I prebaked the puff pastry squares for just a few minutes, flattened them in the center and filled with the chutney and blue cheese. I then popped them back in the oven until the blue cheese melted, drizzled with the caramel and bam! This was a great appetizer to my holiday party.

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