Each year my husband and I start the year with a fast. We put aside the first 21 days and do a Daniel fast (more info here) which is primarily for spiritual reasons with LOADS of health benefits too!
I did a big "number free" shop (i.e. none of the additive numer codes in the ingredients section) and my trolley was full of fruit/ veg and such little packaging it felt SO good!
So, when we had friends over for dinner on New Years Day (who are vegetarian and love eating healthy like us) I started to think outside the box. I served my homade falafel, hommous and tabouli for dinner (recipes to come soon). Here is what I served for dessert and it was delicious and I am making it again tonight.
Sugar-Free Cardamom Poached Pears:
4 pears (stems attached and very firm)
2 cinnamon sticks
3-6 cardamom pods (depending on your taste)
1 split vanilla pod or a dessert spoon of vanilla extract
5 tbl of organic rice malt syrup (my new WONDERFUL find, tastes like honey)
1. Peel the pears making sure you peel all the way to the top nearest the stem so it looks neat.
2. Core the pear by holding it firmly in one hand and gently working it into the centre. Take time doing this step as you don't want to puncture through the side and you want to leave the stem in tact on top.
3. Place pears gently in a saucepan with plums.
4. Add enough water to half cover the pears and place a lid on.
5. Bring water to the boil and then put on lowest heat setting and simmer until the pear is tender and the water reduces a little.
6. Gently spoon a pear into a bowl and then spoon a little syrup around it and serve.