In my eyes, pears are the quintessential autumn fruit. The simplicity of this dish makes it so special. You could also serve these caramelised pears with vanilla bean ice cream (instead of yoghurt) and push it to the other end of the day for a divine dessert.
- 4 (about 200g each) firm but ripe pears (such as Williams or Beurre Bosc)
- 20 g butter, softened
- 2½ tbsp honey
- Greek-style natural yoghurt, to serve
Almond seed bark
- 40 g natural almonds, coarsely chopped
- 1 tbsp sesame seeds
- 1 tbsp sunflower seeds
- 2 tbsp shredded coconut
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tbsp honey, warmed
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Preheat oven to 160ºC (140ºC fan-forced). Line an oven tray with non-stick baking paper.
To make the almond seed bark, combine the almonds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, coconut and cinnamon in a bowl and toss well. Drizzle with the honey and toss well to coat evenly. Spread on the lined tray and bake in preheated oven for 12 minutes, stirring occasionally or until golden and aromatic (it will become crisp on cooling). Remove from oven and set aside to cool. Break into large pieces.
To make the caramelised honey-roasted pears, increase the oven temperature to 200ºC (180ºC fan-forced). Peel and halve the pears. Use a teaspoon or a melon baller to remove the core from the pears. Rub the butter over the base of a shallow ovenproof dish just large enough to hold the pears in one layer. Place the pear halves in the dish cut side down. Drizzle with the honey and bake for 30 minutes, basting occasionally with the juices, or until the pears are just tender and caramelised underneath.
Serve the pears warm or at room temperature sprinkled with the Almond seed crumble and accompanied by the yoghurt.
• These pears will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days. Serve slightly chilled or at room temperature.
• The Almond seed bark will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one week. If it loses its crunch, place on a lined oven tray in a preheated 160°C oven (140°C fan-forced) for 10-12 minutes or until aromatic. Cool on tray.
Anneka's mission is to connect home cooks with the magic of baking, and through this, with those they love. Read our interview with her or for hands-on baking classes and baking tips, visit her at BakeClub. Don't miss what's coming out of her oven via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.
Photography by Alan Benson. Styling by Sarah O’Brien. Food preparation by Kerrie Ray. Creative concept by Lou Fay.
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