Prepare the filling first. Melt first measure of butter. Add lemon rind and juice, almonds, ginger and sugar. Peel and finely slice pears. Add to butter mixture and stir gently so that the pear pieces are coated with mixture. Set aside. Melt the second measure of butter. Combine ground almonds and ginger.
Remove filo pastry from packet. Place on a flat surface and cover with plastic wrap so the pastry doesn't dry out. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Take the first sheet of filo and place it on the tray. Brush pastry with melted butter and sprinkle with some ground almond mixture. Lay another sheet of pastry on top of the first, brush with butter and sprinkle with ground almond mixture.
Continue using all the pastry sheets and all the ground almond mixture. On the last sheet of pastry brush butter around edge of pastry in a 4cm-wide strip. Position prepared pastry on baking tray so that you have one of the shorter borders near you.
Place the pear filling on the pastry keeping the mixture 4cm from the sides. Cover about two-thirds of pastry with pear filling. Fold over the pastry at the end near you; then turn in the sides. Roll the strudel away from you, enclosing the filling. Try and end with the of the pastry underneath. (Do not roll too tightly as the strudel may burst while cooking.)
Brush with a little more melted butter. Sprinkle the top with sliced almonds and brush with butter again. Bake at 180 C for 30 - 35 minutes or until golden brown. If pastry starts to dry out during cooking, brush once more with butter. Allow to cool 10 minutes on the baking tray before sliding onto a serving plate. Serve hot or cold, dusted with icing sugar and whipped cream.
Notes: Use a serrated knife to slice the strudel with a gentle saw movement to avoid crumbling the cooked pastry. Assembling the strudel on the baking tray saves moving the strudel from the bench to the baking tray which can be difficult. Filo pastry will keep for weeks in the refrigerator. Make sure the plastic bag that it is in is well sealed.)
Your Pear Strudel is ready. Bon appetit!
Related recipes: Pear Strudel, Ginger, German, Almond, Filo Pastry
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