Asian pears are so delicate that I never imagined I’d cook with them. In fact, certain varieties are so luscious, expensive, and large that they are often given as gifts. During a trip to Trehune Orchards, I found a much smaller and tarter (and less expensive) variety. After purchasing a sack, I realized I would never get through eating them raw before they went bad. Instead, I baked these into a crisp, using Sheila’s recipe as a baseline and modifying it as I went along. It turned out the pears were perfect to cook with because of their tartness and their lasting crunch. I added chopped walnuts, which added even more crunchy texture, and topped it all off with some honeyed whipped cream.
- 4-5 small asian pears
- 2 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
- 1/4 cup brown sugar, plus a couple tablespoons more
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 1/3 cup flour
- 1/4 cup walnuts, chopped
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
1. Using a bit of butter, grease the bottom of a pie pan. Cut the pears into thin half-rounds, deseeding them as you go. Toss the pears with half of the cinnamon and a bit of brown sugar.
2. Stack the pear halves on the bottom of the pie pan, sprinkling the remaining cinnamon and a bit more brown sugar on each layer.
3. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, sugar, walnuts, and butter with your hands, forming small crumbles. Pour over top the pear layers.
4. Bake for 25 to 35 minutes, until bubbly. Whip cream until firm peaks are formed. Fold in the honey, and whip until well incorporated. Enjoy!