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Tag: pears (Page 1 of 2)

Simply Wonderful Pear Crisp

Sometimes the most basic recipes are the best. They allow natural flavor to shine.  That is the case with this simply wonderful pear crisp.  Juicy ripe pears give us such a burst of bright flavor, accompanied by a lightly sweet crisp topping and a spoonful of fluffy whipped cream.

pear crispJanuary is a time when good fruit can be hard to come by.  But pears are perfect for this time of year.  They are bountiful at the grocery store right now, and when baked, they deliver such a fresh, sweetness, especially when baked with cinnamon and brown sugar.

I have made countless apple crisps in my time, but pear crisp is somewhat new to me.  And really, I don’t know why I have not made it sooner.  It is my new favorite way to eat pears.  I adapted this recipe from one of my favorite cookbooks, called Savor, by Ilona Oppeheim.  I omitted the walnuts for my recipe, mainly so my sweet son would enjoy this crisp, though I think they would be great in it myself.  But it is great without the nuts too, especially with a dollop of homemade whipped cream!

pear crispSunny days are hard to come by in a Michigan January as well, and it looks like the sun has just come out here for awhile. We will take what we can get, and I will be getting outside here as soon as I can!  We had a sunny day last Sunday, and were able to get out on the lake near our house before the weather warmed up just enough to thaw the ice.  My husband and his friend ice fished while my daughter and I had a few minutes before sunset to walk down to the lake and say hello.  It was so peaceful to be out on the ice at sunset.

pear crispFood can be a great comfort at all times of the year.  In the middle of the winter, when it is often cold and gray outside, and dark in the mornings and evenings, warm food can definitely lift the spirits.  This pear crisp puts a smile on my face, and my family loves it as well.  And it is so very easy to make, which is an added bonus! Be well and stay warm! I will be sharing this recipe over at Angie’s weekly link party, Fiesta Friday!pear crisppears

Simply Wonderful Pear Crisp

  • Servings: 4
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  • 1/3 cup of all purpose flour (or whole wheat pastry flour)
  • 1/4 cup of old fashioned rolled oats
  • 3 tablespoons of brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon of salt
  • 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup  or one half stick) of unsalted butter, plus a bit more for greasing the baking pan
  • 4 ripe pears (or 6 pears if they are small), peeled, cored, and diced
  • whipped cream (optional)


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Lightly grease a 9 x 9 inch baking dish.  (You can also use four 4-inch ramekins if you wish.)

In a large bowl, combine the flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt.  With a pastry cutter, cut in the butter until the mixture forms large crumbs.

Place the diced pears in the baking pan in a single layer.  Sprinkle the flour mixture evenly over the pears.

Bake in your 350 degree oven for about 45 minutes, or until the topping is golden brown and fruit is soft.  Serve warm with a spoonful of whipped cream on top, if desired.  Enjoy!


Apple and Pear Mini Galettes

Apples and pears are so delicious and abundant this time of year.  These little galettes are full of the quintessential fall flavors of succulent baked apples and pears, surrounded by tender pastry.  Because they are mini, they are just the right size for one person, and great for dessert, a snack, or even breakfast. Because the fruit is so fresh and flavorful, these galettes do not need a lot of ingredients.

At the height of autumn, there is so much beauty and bounty from nature.  And there are people who love the bounty and want to share it.  My daughter and I were at a farmers market in a nearby town recently, where we encountered a farm stand I had never seen before at this market.  The woman there had piles of pumpkins and squash, and baskets heaped with red, ripe tomatoes and beautiful pears.  Her prices were so low, she was almost giving the produce away, and I could tell she really wanted people to use and enjoy her fruits and vegetables.  I bought a basket of ripe, golden pears from her, though the price was so low it truly felt like a gift.  A couple of days later, my mother brought us a bag of apples from the iconic cider mill in the town where I grew up.  I have so many memories of going to that cider mill as a kid, of sitting along the river and drinking that fresh cider from paper cups and eating doughnuts from a paper bag.

apple and pear galettes on baking sheet with fruitAnyway, I knew I had to do something with this fruit to honor its goodness and the generous spirit in which it was given.  Since I am slightly obsessed with galettes this year, I wanted to try these two archetypal fall fruits in galettes.  I am so glad I did, because they tasted wonderful, and my kitchen smelled amazingly good while they were baking.  Also, since galettes are considered rustic, I don’t feel a lot of pressure to make them look perfect.  The taste is of paramount importance though, and the fruit stands out nicely.   My family smiled and ate them up.  Good thing I captured them in photographs before anyone else got home!

pear galetteI hope you are enjoying the abundance of fall and the joy of generosity.  Small acts of kindness can make someone’s day.  A beautiful basket of pears, a bag of fresh apples, a pear or apple galette, or even just a smile.  It makes me think of that bumper sticker that says, “practice random acts of kindness and senseless acts of beauty,” or something close to that.  Receive graciously. Pass it on.  I hope you all have a beautiful weekend!

pearsI am sharing these seasonal galettes with the lovely bloggers at Angie’s Fiesta Friday #89, co-hosted today by Mila @ Milk and Bun  and Kaila @ GF Life 24/7. raw apple and pear galettesapple and pear galettes with fruit and coffeeapple and pear galettes on purple bench 1heart rock

Apple and Pear Mini Galettes

  • Servings: 8
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For the apple filling:

  • 2 cups of apple, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup of sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon (or to taste)

For the pear filling:

  • 2 cups of pear, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup of sugar
  • 1 tablespoon of flour

For the crusts:

  • 2 cups of unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 2/3 cup of unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 6 to 7 tablespoon of cold water

For the egg wash:

  • one egg, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon of water


Wash, peel, and thinly slice the apples.  In a small mixing bowl, combine the apples, sugar, cinnamon, and flour.  Wash, peel, and thinly slice the pears.  In another small mixing bowl, combine the pears, sugar, and flour.

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour and the salt.  Gradually cut in the butter with a fork or a pastry cutter, combining until the mixture has the consistency of peas.  Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of the cold water over the dough, and gently toss with a fork.  Repeat until the dough is moistened, but not so wet that it is slimy.  If you add too much water, add a little flour.  Work the water through just until the dough is a nice, soft texture, but don’t over-work it.  Divide the dough in half, forming two balls.  Set one ball aside.  Divide the other ball into four smaller balls of about equal size.  On a lightly floured surface, flatten a small ball with the palm of your hand.  Then roll the dough from the center to the edges, forming a circle of about 6 inches in diameter.  Do the same thing with the remaining 3 small balls of dough.  When you have four 6-inch circles of dough, spoon the apple mixture onto the center of the circles, distributing it evenly and leaving about a 2-inch border of dough around the circles.  Gently fold the edges of the dough around the fruit, pleating all the way around the edges.  Transfer the galettes to one of the baking sheets.

Clean any residual dough off the floured surface, and sprinkle more flour on it.  Take the second large ball of dough and repeat the above process, making 4 six-inch circles of dough.  Spoon the pear mixture onto these four circles.  There may be a lot of pear juice at the bottom of the bowl, so try to spoon out the fruit, leaving as much juice as possible in the bowl.  Repeat the folding and pleating process and transfer the pear galettes to the other baking sheet.

In a small bowl, beat the egg and add a tablespoon of water.  With a pastry brush, brush the edges of the galette crusts with the egg wash.

Bake in a 425-degree oven for 15 minutes, or until the crusts are lightly golden and the fruit is bubbly.  Serve with vanilla ice cream if desired. Enjoy! 

Spiced Pear Bread

pear bread on porchIt is an ongoing goal and challenge to use food wisely.  When I see a piece of fruit in the fruit bowl getting a little too ripe, I feel like I need to do something with it.  Of course, this is a good problem to have–too much food–much better than the opposite problem–but I want to continually learn to use the food I have in ways that taste delicious and give us good energy.  Sometimes it is hard to plan or predict how much food to buy at a time–who knew my kids would go through a big bag of pretzels in two days, yet ignore the pears?  I guess I should have known!  Anyway, this spiced pear bread is a tasty way to use a very ripe pear–the juicier the pear, the moister the bread.  And it is a more nourishing snack than a plate full of pretzels! (Pretzels have their place too, but variety is a good thing).  The cinnamon, cloves, and orange rind add to this bread’s subtle, sweet flavor, and it tastes great just sliced on its own or with a little butter or cream cheese on it.  Add a steaming cup of tea, coffee, or hot chocolate, and it’s even better.  I based this recipe on one I found in my Dr. Cookie Cookbook by Marvin Wayne and Stephen Yarnall, though I made some changes.  Isn’t that the beauty of recipes, that they are always evolving with the years and with the people who use them.  I am taking this bread over to Angie’s blog at The Novice Gardener for the Fiesta Friday link party.  I always find inspiring ideas there! Hope you all have a wonderful weekend. chopped pears and orangepear bread overviewpear bread and orangesunrise on porch

Spiced Pear Bread

  • Servings: 1 loaf, or 12 slices
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  • 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  •  1/4 cup honey
  • 2-3 tablespoons unsweetened applesauce–if your pear is very juicy, lean towards 2 tablespoons, if not so juicy, use 3
  • 1 teaspoon orange rind (you may also you lemon rind)
  • 1 cup finely chopped unpeeled pear (about one pear)


Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Lightly grease a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan.  In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, cloves, and salt, and set aside.  In another mixing bowl, vigorously stir the eggs, brown sugar, and oil until smooth.  (You can use an electric mixer if you want, but I did not find it necessary as long as I stirred it really well).  Add the honey, applesauce, orange or lemon rind, and stir well again.  Then, gently stir the flour mixture and the pear into the batter until just combined.  Scrape the combined batter into the prepared loaf pan.  Bake in your oven for 40-50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean. It’s okay if the crust cracks a little.  Cool the bread in the loaf pan on a wire rack for about 10 minutes, then turn out of the pan onto the wire rack and cool completely.  Enjoy!

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