AppetizerDavid Scott AllenProvencal RecipesTaste

Goat Blue Cheese and Pear Timbales a Light Starter Course

This recipe combines sharp, creamy blue goat cheese and ripe Anjou pears in a lovely savoury flan or timbales. The Anjou pear is also called the Genovian pear (in Italy), and perhaps that is a good example of the transferability of the language of cooking. A timbale in French cuisine is a sweet or savoury, custard-like recipe that is cooked in a cylindrical pan or bottomless dish (flan ring). In Italian, the same dish is called a Timballo. You say tomat-oh…

Here is David’s original post and gorgeous step-by-step photos of this starter dish, which he prepared for Valentine’s dinner.

Blue Goat Cheese and Pear Timbales @Cocoa&Lavender

Goat Blue and Pear Timbales

This starter course is actually very easy to make, but you don't need to tell your guests. Enjoy this savoury combination of blue cheese, pear and walnuts.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Course Appetizer
Cuisine French, Provencal
Servings 4 people


  • a pat of Butter for the ramekins
  • Parchment Paper
  • 2 5-inch Sprigs Rosemary leaves only
  • 1/2 teaspoon White Peppercorns
  • 1/2 cup + 2 Tbsp Cream
  • 4 oz Blue Goat Cheese or other blue cheese
  • 2 large eggs
  • Salt
  • 1/2 Anjou Pear (firm-ripe ) peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • Baby Spinach Leaves about 8-10 per serving
  • 4 + Whole Walnut Halves for garnish, plus chopped walnuts,
  • Floral Honey for drizzling


  • Preheat oven to 325°F. Butter 4 3/4-cup ramekins, and line the bottom with a round of parchment.
  • Lightly butter the parchment.
  • Set a kettle of water to heat on the back burner.
  • Using a spice grinder, pulverize the rosemary leaves and white peppercorns into a fine dust.
  • Place about 1/2 teaspoon in each ramekin; tilt and swirl to coat the bottoms.
  • Divide the remaining rosemary-pepper mixture among the four ramekins and shake to distribute evenly.
  • Place in the bottom of a 9-inch square baking pan. Set aside.
  • Cut goat cheese into two pieces. Crumble one, and cut the other into cubes.
  • Place cream and crumbled cheese into a large bowl and whisk until smooth and thick - the cheese will not fully dissolve but you will notice a difference.
  • Add eggs and a pinch of salt. Whisk again.
  • Then gently stir in the cheese cubes.
  • Divide the cheese mixture among the 4 ramekins, then divide the pear cubes among the four and press them down into the cheese mixture.
  • Place pan with the filled ramekins in the oven and carefully pour boiling water from the kettle around the ramekins until it comes 3/4 of the way up the outsides.
  • Bake for 30 minutes, then allow to cool at least 30 minutes on a rack. If not cooled properly, they will fall apart.
  • Arrange spinach leaves on 4 plates.
  • Loosen the sides if the custards with a very thin knife blade, and invert onto the spinach beds on each plate.
  • Make sure to remove the parchment if it didn’t stay in the ramekins.
  • Top each custard with a walnut half, sprinkle chopped nuts around and give a light drizzle of honey to the whole dish.


It is important to let the ramkins rest for 30-minutes (or so) after cooking.
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David Scott Allen

David Scott Allen

David Scott Allen is the author, photographer, and cook behind Cocoa & Lavender, a weekly food blog based in Tucson, Arizona. Passionate about travel, he especially enjoys eating traditional foods and learning local customs, whether in the United States or around the globe.

David's first trip to France took place when he was 14, and he returned as often as possible thereafter. However, it wasn't until his 50th birthday that he finally made it south to Provence. The beauty, history, charm, warmth, cuisine, and - of course - the rosé wines captured his heart. He shares his Provençal recipes here on Perfectly Provence, and his food and wine pairings monthly on the Provence WineZine.

David is a firm believer that sharing a meal with friends around the table is one of life's greatest pleasures. And if it happens to be in Provence, all the better!

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