OK, these aren’t officially baked goods, they are fried, but definitely worth the effort. I made them for a little dinner party. They looked posh and went down a treat.

2 ½ cups flour (I used gluten free)
¼ c caster sugar
pinch salt
2 eggs, separated
1 Tbs olive oil
about ¾ c ice water
4 firm yet ripe pears, peeled, cored and cut into ½ inch thick wedges
½ c vin santo (I used port)
canola oil for frying
icing sugar for dusting

In large bowl whisk together 1 ¾ c of the flour, sugar and salt. Make well in centre, add egg yolks and olive oil and beat together lightly with a fork. With a wooden spoon, gradually incorporate the flour into the egg mixture, adding 1 Tbs of the ice water at a time until the mixture forms a smooth thick batter (you might not need it all). Cover and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.

In a clean bowl beat egg whites until they form stiff peaks. Fold into chilled batter and set aside.

Place remaining ½ c flour on a plate and put sweet wine in another shallow bowl. Dip the pear wedges into the wine then dredge lightly in flour and set aside.

Pour 3-4 inches of oil into a deep saucepan and heat to 180 C. Oil is ready when a drop of batter sizzles on contact with the oil. Working in batches to avoid overcrowding, dip the pears into the batter, letting the excess batter drip back into the bowl.  Cook in the oil for about 4 mins in total, turning once. Put on paper towel to drain. Dust with icing sugar and serve at once.

Recipe from 'Florence' published by Williams-Sonoma.

I served mine with banana sorbet (frozen bananas put through my Oscar juicer using the mincing tool) and vegan chocolate sauce.

For the sauce mix together over low heat: 4 Tbs maple syrup or honey, 3 Tbs cocoa powder, 1 Tbs cornflour, ½ tsp molasses, 1 tsp oil, ½ tsp cider vinegar, ½ c boiling water.