Help me kill pears
I have 10 bosc that need to die. I'd like to do something more creative than poach them in wine. I'm a failure when it comes to making pie crusts. When baking things, I prefer high fruit to dough ratios (ie pie/tart over cake). Other than that, I'm wide open. I wouldn't say no to buying a pie crust, and I have amaretto, ricotta, and mascarpone on hand. Any thoughts?
Make Pear Marmalade: Peel and grind coarsely (or chop coarsely in Cuisinart) 4-5 lb hard pears. At the same time, also grind 1 whole lemon. Add to this 1/2 cup finely chopped candied ginger, 1 cup drained canned crushed pineapple, and 7 cups sugar. Boil slowly until it gels (use thermometer or drop from spoon). Makes 10 glasses. Very good on hot buttered toast with a pot of tea.
In the fall, I make a Gingered Apple-Pear Chutney (I posted this a long time ago, so I'll repost here rather than make you read an entire thread). It freezes well and you could probably just use all pear.
GINGERED APPLE-PEAR CHUTNEY
½ onion, chopped
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup Sucanat
2/3 cup red wine vinegar
1/3 cup raisins
2 tsp grated ginger
shredded peel of 1 lemon
1 tsp mustard seed
½ tsp ground cumin
¼ tsp ground red pepper
2 cups chopped tomatoes (canned okay)
3 cups chopped apples and pears (about 2 medium of each)
In large saucepan, combine onions, sugar, Sucanat, vinegar, raisins, ginger, lemon peel, mustard seed, cumin and red pepper. Bring to boil. Reduce heat. Simmer 10-15 minutes.
Add tomatoes and cook for 15 minutes. Add apples and pears. Bring back to boil. Reduce heat. Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes until thickened, stirring frequently. Can be served warm or cool.
You can use sugar instead of the Sucanat--I used Sucanat because I needed to use up what I had! Also, the amount of apples to pears (and total amount, period) is open to modification. I usually have about 3-1/2 cups.
Hazan's Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking has a recipe for one of the simplest and most satisfying pear torte: a small amount of batter holding together pear slices, dotted with butter and -- stroke of genius -- spangled with cloves.
Pear omelets can make a fine end to a meal or even a fine meal on their own. Peeled, cored and quartered pears are slowly caramelized in butter. Egg is poured over. The omelet is slid onto a warm plate, sprinkled with sugar and flambéed with Poire Williams and/or brandy.
If you'd like either recipe, say the word.
This time of year, I also like to end meals with a plate of watercress (sometimes plain, sometimes dressed with sherry vinegar and hazelnut oil), pear slices and a mellow blue cheese like Fourme d'Ambert or Bleu d'auvergne.
Here you go. Hazan says the cloves are optional but I wouldn't leave them out.
TORTA DI PERE ALLA PAESANA
(Adapted from Marcella Hazan’s Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking)
Preheat oven to 375ºF. Generously butter a 9-inch round cake pan (I use a springform pan). Sprinkle with 1/2 CUP DRY, UNFLAVOURED BREAD CRUMBS. Invert the pan and rap lightly to eliminate the loose crumbs.
Beat 2 EGGS and 1/4 CUP MILK in a large bowl. Stir in 1 CUP GRANULATED SUGAR and 1 PINCH SALT. Add 1 1/2 CUPS ALL-PURPOSE FLOUR, stirring until the batter is smooth.
Peel and seed 2 POUNDS PEARS (Bosc, Anjou and Conferenza are recommended, Bartletts are not). Cut into 1-inch slices. Add the slices to the batter and stir gently to coat.
Pour the batter into the pan, levelling it with the spoon. Dot with butter, pushing the butter pieces into the batter. Lightly crush 12-15 CLOVES in a mortar and scatter over the top of the cake.
Bake in the upper third of the oven until the top is lightly coloured, about 45 minutes. Let cool slightly, then remove from the pan. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature.
I have a couple...
Spiced and Caramelized
1/4 cup apple juice
1/4 + 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice, divided
7 pounds pears
3cups brown sugar packed
1 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
3/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1 tbsp vanilla, optional
Combine cut and cored pears with apple juice and 1/4 lemon in pot. Bring to boil and stir and simmer for 15 minutes. Then reduce to medium low and simmer for about 20 min til pears are tender. Remove from heat and press through food mill. Return to pan with the rest of ingredients and reduce til about 8 cups. Can and jar as usual.
Spiced from Epicurious - this is also good.
Butter a baking dish. Heat oven to 350. Halve and core pears. Dot pears w/a little butter in the cavity, maybe sprinkle on a little sugar, brown or white. Put in dish and bake 10-15 minutes. Remove and pour some cream (1/2 c. for 2 pear halves?--or whatever looks right--and maybe a bit more sugar) over them. Bake another 19-15 minutes. They will be all caramel-ly. Mmmm. Enjoy (1) as they are (2) over icecream or (3) over pound cake.
These are wonderful, however you serve them. They will make you seem like a fabulous cook, even if you aren't. If you have 10 pears, have a dinner party. Whatever you serve, they'll remember the dessert, trust me.
instead of poached, how about stuffed & baked?
or if you want to make a tart, there's no need to bother with a pie crust - you can use phyllo or puff pastry instead. here's a simple recipe i wrote up for a client who wanted an easy, lighter tart. you can certainly use whole eggs instead of egg whites for the wash, and serve with mascarpone or ice cream if you desire. you could also use a little of that amaretto instead of water to thin out the jam.
GHG's NO-FUSS PEAR TART
1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed for 20 minutes (do not unfold
)3-4 Bosc or Anjou pears
¼ cup raw sugar
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
a pinch of cardamom
2 large egg whites or ¼ cup egg substitute, beaten with 1 tablespoon water
2 tablespoons unsalted butter or coconut oil, melted
2 tablespoons apricot jam
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place thawed, *unfolded* pastry sheet on a lightly floured surface, and roll out to a rectangle that measures approximately 8 X 14 inches. Use a sharp paring knife to trim the edges if necessary, transfer to a lightly greased baking sheet, and place in the freezer.
2. Peel, core and cut pears into ¼-inch-thick slices, and toss in a bowl with sugar, cinnamon and cardamom.
3. Remove pastry from freezer, and using a brush, coat lightly with beaten egg whites, avoiding edges. Using a sharp paring knife and taking care not to cut all the way through the dough, score a ¾-inch border around the pastry. Arrange the pear slices inside the border, being sure to distribute them evenly, and drizzle with melted butter or margarine.
4. Bake until puff pastry is golden and pears are tender, 25-30 minutes.
5. Heat jam in microwave with 1 tablespoon of water until melted, and brush over pears. Serve tart warm, garnished with fresh whipped cream or frozen yogurt.
or for something totally different if you'll consider straying from the dessert ideas, they're terrific in a salad with arugula, cheese (chevre, Asiago or Roquefort), nuts (walnuts or pecans), sliced red onion, and a nice, sharp, acidic vinaigrette.
How about a pear crisp? Peel, core & slice the pears; add to a bowl. Sprinkle with a couple tablespoons flour, brown sugar, some cinnamon and/or nutmeg and coat. Pour into a baking dish sprayed with non stick spray. Make a combination of Oats, flour, brown sugar, a pinch of salt and some chopped walnuts or pecans (if you'd like) Cut some ice cold butter into cubes. Using your hands, combine the oat mix & flour, pressing the butter into the mix to distribute evenly. Sprinkle mixture over the pears and bake in a 350F. degree oven for 20-30 minutes or until golden and pears are tender. I've used the individual packets of flavored oatmeal (Maple & brown sugar, for example) and added some flour, instead of making the oat mix.
You could also make a pear ravioli; again, peel & seed the pears...chop them and add nutmeg, sugar (or not) and a pinch of salt; grate on a bit of lemon or orange zest. Mix well. Use eggroll or wonton skins. While you're making the ravioli, melt some butter in a large skillet, browning slowly (careful not to burn it) Place some in pears in center of the a skin, brush with water and top with another skin. Using a biscuit cutter, cut the ravioli out. Once all are formed, slowly cook the ravioli in the butter, turning as they brown. Serve with toasted chopped nuts and whipped cream for a dessert or add some ham to the filling with the pears and make it an entree dish
I'm also a failure when it comes to pie crust, so I make crisps. Here's my favorite recipe:
With pears, I usually use brown sugar for the 1/2-3/4 cup sugar that goes in with the fruit. Whip the mascarpone with the amaretto and put a dollop on top; serve warm, if possible.