5 sweet wintry ways with balsamic

By Hannah Lewry, 5 June 2015

Hannah Lewry recently discovered just how incredibly versatile balsamic vinegar is. This week she takes it out of its savoury comfort zone and brings you five sweet balsamic desserts on a whole new level of delicious.

Pear balsamic tart with almonds
Preheat the oven to 180°C and thaw the phyllo pastry. Finely slice 3 to 4 ripe pears, keeping the skins intact. Brush 4 sheets of phyllo with melted butter before arranging flat on a baking sheet. Top with a layer or two of the super-thinly sliced pears. Drizzle the pears with 3 or 4 T honey and 2 T balsamic vinegar, and dot with 50g cubes of butter. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes until golden and crisp. Top with a generous sprinkling of toasted flaked almonds to serve. It’s also delicious with whipped cream. I like it just like this, but if you want to add shavings of strong cheese or lashings of melted white chocolate, go for it!

Baked sticky balsamic apples with walnuts
Preheat the oven to 180°C. Peel and slice 2 apples into quarters, remove the core, and arrange on a baking sheet. Mix about 4 T each of cream and good balsamic vinegar and spoon over the apples. Sprinkle with about 100g brown sugar and 50g chopped walnuts and bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Eat warm with rice pudding or custard.

Balsamic berries with gorgonzola cake toasts
Combine 3 T balsamic, 2 T sugar, 200g frozen blueberries and a split vanilla pod and bring to a simmer in a saucepan for 2 to 4 minutes until fragrant. Spoon the mixture over thick slices of toasted Woolworths Madeira cake, sprinkle with crumbled gorgonzola and place under the grill for a minute until slightly melted and sticky. Eat while hot instead of serving a cheese board.

Balsamic-drizzled ice cream and chocolate pudding
This is super easy, but still a real showstopper. Simply drizzle the best quality balsamic vinegar or balsamic crema over scoops of Woolworths vanilla-bean ice cream. Start sparingly – about 1 T for 2 scoops – and adjust to taste. Serve as is, or with bowls of Woolworths warm chocolate pudding.

Balsamic-and-pistachio chocolate truffles
Start by making a ganache. Heat 1 cup of cream in a saucepan and when just starting to simmer (not boil), add 120g finely chopped dark chocolate. Stir until it’s melted in, remove from heat and stir in 1 to 2 T balsamic vinegar, depending on taste. Chill in the fridge for about an hour, before moulding into bite-sized balls. Roll in cocoa powder to coat and then in 100g finely chopped pistachios to finish.

Hannah Lewry

Article by Hannah Lewry

Woolworths TASTE’s Food Editor is passionate about conjuring up fresh ideas for fast and easy dishes that taste as great as they look. Turn to her expertise for everything from time-saving mid-week food to lazy weekend meals. You’ll have a lot of fun in the kitchen while you’re about it.
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