IT’S SO EASY, and also good for you—so good you could eat one for breakfast, and nobody would even raise an eyebrow, at least not in my household. And ‘tis their season, so I’ve been baking pears. I feel silly even telling you how to do this. I mean, “baked pears” is pretty self-explanatory, right? But just in case you’ve never tried it:
easiest baked pears
- pears, firm but just ripe, such as ‘Bosc’ type
- sugar (white or brown)
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Lightly butter a Pyrex or ceramic oven-proof pan. Sprinkle a little sugar in the bottom.
- Peel (or don’t—your call), and then halve firm but just-ripe pears. I repeat the firm part because if you have ever tried to peel or core an over-ripe pear, you know it’s a messy affair. With very-ripe fruit, maybe skip the peeling.
- Scoop out the seeds, using the tip of a grapefruit spoon or a plain teaspoon, rotating it firmly but gently over each half of the seed area.
- Place the halves face down (or up—again, there’s no right or wrong) and place the pan in oven.
- Bake about 30-40 minutes, until tender.
- I use just a sprinkling of sugar in the bottom of the pan with the butter (above). I could even skip it.
- About six halves fit in a Pyrex pie pan (below).
- Using more sugar and butter, particularly brown sugar, will yield a caramel-like syrup in the bottom that you can spoon over the finished fruit, but I think the pears are sweet enough as is.
- You could also make “syrup” with apple juice and brown sugar in the pan, or add some prunes and cinnamon and a little brown sugar, or hey, bake them whole in honey and sugar with spices like clove or cinnamon. In other words: Do whatever you want and it will be delicious. (Well, maybe no sardines or olives or anchovies.)
- Besides the prune idea, walnuts, raisins or dried cranberries could be used as a garnish, and the hollow in the half-pears shouts for a little cream, creme fraiche, yogurt or even ice cream.
Disclaimer: Good luck eating only one-half or even one whole baked pear. At least you can say it was doctor’s orders, and that you were just trying to get all your servings of fruits and vegetables.
Have you ever tried cooking a quince? Grown a quince tree?
I have not, Whitney, ever grown quince (other than flowering ornamental shrubs types, genus Chaenomeles, not the fruiting tree, genus Cydonia). They are often written about in cookbooks and on cooking blogs as slow to poach, but I have no first-hand knowledge.
Speaking of other fruit, I have just ‘discovered’ persimmons, the native small variety. A persimmon tree grows along the roadside here that I’ve passed by for years. This year they were especially prolific and pretty, so I decided to see what I could do with them. I used a food mill to extract the mass quantities of seeds but eventually was able to get 11 cups. It was a labor of love. The pulp is delicious and sweet with (IMO) no sweetener needed. I could find no safe canning recipes so I froze it all in different sized containers. So far I’ve used it for jam, topped cheesecakes, and made persimmon pudding. There are ‘American’ persimmon trees growing in the wild in many areas of the country and hardy to zone 5. So glad I finally stopped and gave this beauty a second look.
I planted two quince trees on my last property. They were lovely and gave beautiful fruit the first couple of years. I first baked the fruit whole in the oven until soft. Then peeled and seeded them. I made quince jam with it and it was delicious. Unfortunately, the gophers ate the roots in later years and they both died.
Now I live on much smaller piece of property (5 acres) and I’m planning on planting a few more quince trees. This time I’ll be sure to plant them in root cages and use plenty of Mole Away?
Love the pear recipe btw. Thanks
I like ‘baked’ pears, too. But I don’t bake them. I microwave them. Peel and core the bosc pears just the way you do, Margaret. Then place the halved pears in a glass pie plate, put a dot of butter and a 1/2 tsp of brown sugar in the center of each pear. Sprinkle with a little ground cinnamon. Cover with waxed paper and cook on high for a few minutes. Remove and let cool a little. Serve and enjoy.
You just reminded me that it is lunch time. Wish I had some pears to prepare like this. I know just one wouldn’t be enough.
Sounds like a delicious accompaniment to roast pork!
Margaret – I love that you’re a resource even IN THE WINTER. This is easily vegan adaptable… Thank you!!
What a great recipe. Love pares and will shortly have a house guest. What to serve for breakfast or even dessert that is impressive but not a lot of time from the guest. Thank you.
Monk fruit instead of sugar and a little olive oil spray is a zero point WW treat. We did that every night with apples. Pears sound delicious!
I have baked a pear every morning since your post. Love them with a few raisins, walnuts & yogurt. Thank you Margaret for this delicious & easy breakfast recipe.
What a wonderful comment to hear, Nycole. I just love them, too — and I often serve it with yogurt, as you say. Thanks for checking in!
We have an old pear tree and last fall I baked the pears in organic apple cider (they were hard as a rock so I ended up peeling and slicing them) . I didn’t add any sugar and they were delicious on their own or with yogurt. The only downside is it IS hard to stop eating them!
Margaret, you inspired me with baked pears several years ago. I did like you only I don’t peel, put a glob of yogurt in the cavity, sprinkle with sliced almonds, drizzle with maple syrup, and grate a little nutmeg over all before putting them in the oven. Turns it into a yummy dessert and folks love them. Thanks for the inspiration.
Stopping off for pears on the way home; can’t wait to try them; yum!
Oh yummmmmmmmmm !
Had the pears for breakfast twice this past week.
Received your book from Oblong. It’s even more beautiful than I thought it would be. It’s an autographed copy and I must comment on your signature……….. Do you have any trouble cashing checks ? (Chuckling at the breakfast table) ?