Pears are a versatile delight that marry well with so many complex flavors. Sweetly spiced, Autumn meets the tropics in this dessert version of the classic Bermudan cocktail. This recipe comes to us from A Mighty Appetite for the Holidays by our friend Kim O’Donnel.
For the filling
- 6-8 Bartlett or Anjou pears, peeled, cored and chopped
- 1/3 cup raisins, soaked in 1/3 cup rum for at least 20 minutes
- 3 tablespoons crystallized ginger, chopped
- 2 teaspoons lime zest
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 whole Vanilla bean
- 1 teaspoon high-quality vanilla extract
For the topping
- 6 tablespoons flour
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened and cut into pieces
- 3/4 cup walnuts or pecans, chopped
To prepare the filling:
In a medium mixing bowl, add pears, raisins, rum, ginger and lime zest. Stir to combine. Pour into an 8-inch square, 9-inch pie plate or a skillet with an oven-proof handle.
In a small saucepan over low heat, melt butter. If using vanilla bean, cut lengthwise and scrape out the insides. If using vanilla extract, pour directly over filling. Let butter brown for at least three minutes. Pour browned butter over fruit. Set aside.
To prepare the topping:
In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugars, nutmeg, cinnamon and salt. Using your hands, pinch butter into mixture until it looks like crumbly wet sand. Refrigerate for about 15 minutes before using.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Drop topping onto buttered fruit, covering entire surface. Sprinkle nuts on top.
Bake for 40 minutes, or until fruit is fork-tender and topping is crunchy. Cool slightly and serve in bowls.