The blog post was created as part of a paid collaboration with Microplane® . I was gifted the items as part of the collaboration, but my opinion of the products are completely honest and represent my own.
At this time of year, all I can think about is comfort food. Whether it be eating or baking, once those clocks go back and the nights draw in I’m all about pies, pudding and rich decadent desserts. This is probably why Autumn is my favourite season, especially when it comes to baking, so I’m super thankful that I’ve slowed down just in time to enjoy it.
This weekend I spent a full Saturday in the kitchen. It was bliss, drinking hot cups of tea and watching the rain fall against the window whilst I was at work. I asked some of you what you wanted to see from me this season and a few of you mentioned an Autumnal loaf so I used this as my base for inspiration and selected a great seasonal trio Pears, Chocolate and Ginger.
I usually find the preparation of peeling fruit and grating wet ingredients like apple, carrot or ginger a bit of a chore as it creates such a mess, but with thanks to two of my newest Kitchen Drawer recruits from Microplane I was able to prepare the pears and ginger, quickly and with very little mess.
My first new joiner was the Microplane Professional Peeler. Thanks to this I am an official peeler convert and am in the process of searching for recipes that require its use. The pear skin glided off without any pressure and a lightning speed thanks to the comfortable handle.
Key features of the professional peeler are:
- Razor sharp double-sided stainless-steel blade for effortless peeling
- Movable blade that always adapts to the shape of the peel
- Ergonomic soft-touch handle
- Practical potato eye remover
- Suitable for right and left-handed people
Next up was the Microplane Master Series Zester. This now has to be one of the most used utensils in my drawer. I actually find an excuse to use it, opting to grate garlic instead of crushing it and actively seeking recipes that require it. Other ideal ingredients for its use are spices such as nutmeg, chocolate, truffles, chilli, nuts, hard cheese and thanks to its super sharp stain-less steel blade you get perfectly zested citrus that precisely grates and doesn’t tear.
It’s also a really elegant kitchen tool with the lovely walnut wood handle so it sits beautifully on my kitchen counter. I’m so tempted to get the rest of the series where there are 4 more blades available (Coarse, Fine, Ribbon and Extra Coarse) to collect.
Key features of the Master Series Zester are:
- Photo-etched, long-lasting, ultra-sharp stainless-steel blade
- Perfect depth blade so you only get the zest
- Non-slip rubber foot for comfort and stability whilst grating
- Elegant walnut wood handle
- Easy storage and reusable protective cover
So now you’ve been fully introduced to my new kitchen drawer tools, it’s time to set them to work and show you what they can do.
I’m also really excited to be able to offer you the chance to win your very own Microplane Professional Peeler and Master Series Zester. This exciting Autumn Giveaway is being run over on my Instagram account @mykitchendrawer so to be in with a chance of winning make sure you head there to enter.
T&C’s apply: UK Residents only, expires 10th November. Competition is now closed!
Pear, Chocolate and Ginger Loaf
For the poached pears
- 3 conference Pears peeled using Microplane Professional Peeler
- 750 ml white wine
- 200 g granulated sugar
- 250 ml water
- 3 cinnamon sticks
- 10 cardamon pods
For the cake
- 170 g butter softened
- 175 g treacle
- 150 g light muscovado sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp freshly grated ginger Using Microplane Master Series Zester
- 320 g self-raising flour
- 40 G cocoa powder
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp bicarbonate soda
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 250 ml natural yoghurt
- Begin by peeling the pears using Microplane’s Professional Peeler, then cut the bottoms so they stand up.
- Place the pears into a large pan, then fill the pan with white wine, sugar, water, and spices and heat them until the mixture begins to boil. Once boiling turn the heat down to simmer and continue to cook for 45 minutes. Remove pears from poaching liquid and allow to cool slightly while you prepare the cake batter
- Continue heating the remaining poaching liquid for 5 minutes so it reduces down to a syrup, then sieve it into a jug and set aside for later.
- Preheat oven to 170°C and grease a large loaf pan with butter then set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat the butter, treacle, and sugar together until light and fluffy. Follow this with the eggs and vanilla extract and beat them into the mixture for an additional 3 minutes.
- Peel and cut a 5cm piece of ginger. Grate it using the Microplane Master Series Zester and stir it into the mixture.
- In a separate bowl, combine the flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt, whisking to combine. Slowly alternate folding in the flour mixture and the natural yogurt into the wet ingredients until everything is well combined.
- Pour the mixture into the loaf pan, then place the pears bottom side down in the batter so they are nearly fully submerged.
- Bake for 1 hour, then remove from the oven and prick the top of the loaf with a fork. Using a pastry brush, brush over some of the remaining poaching liquid, allowing it to seep through the holes.
- Allow the pan to sit for 20 minutes on a cooling rack before removing the loaf out to cool further.
- Serve with your choice of custard, ice cream, cream or a drizzle of the left over poaching syrup.