Four years ago, B and I went to a dinner event at the Beard House, and for dessert, beautifully poached ginger pears plated with ginger ice cream were presented before us. Inspired by this dessert and since pears are in season, I decided to give my hand at roasting them in ginger and vanilla bean. B doesn’t care for cooked fruit. He doesn’t like jelly or jams either. So I only roasted two pears to enjoy all weekend long by myself with a big scoop of ice cream.
I just realized this is the third post in a row where the recipe title starts with “roasted”. Hope you don’t mind. Your kitchen will be filled with aromas of ginger spice, warmth from the cinnamon, and vanilla as the pears roast in the oven. I used a wildflower honey which has a floral scent and pairs wonderfully with the spices. The cacao nibs add a crunch and bitterness that balances out the sweetness. Don’t forget to drizzle some of the ginger syrup on your ice cream. I might have even convinced B to at least try it.
Roasted Pears with Ginger and Vanilla Bean
2 firm ripe pears, halved and cored (such as bosc or anjou)
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 vanilla bean, split
1/4 cup chopped toasted hazelnuts
2 tablespoons cacao nibs
vanilla bean ice cream, for serving
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Arrange the pears cut side up in a small baking dish.
In a small saucepan, add the butter and honey. Stir together over low heat until melted. Stir in the ginger and cinnamon. Using a paring knife, scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean and add them to the pan along with the vanilla bean. Stir together until well combined. Turn off the heat. Spoon the mixture over the pears, nestling the vanilla bean between the pears.
Cover and bake covered for 15 minutes. Remove the dish from the oven and turn the pears over, cut side down. Bake uncovered for 20 to 30 minutes until tender. Remove the dish from the oven. Discard the vanilla bean. Turn the pears over, cut side up. Sprinkle with hazelnuts and cacao nibs. Serve with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream and drizzle remaining pan juices on top.