I have to say that pears are often overlooked. For instance, when shopping for something to bake; many grab the traditional apple or banana. But apple and banana everything gets boring after a while.
Don’t you grow tired of banana bread and apple crisp? Bananas and apples are delicious but there are other fabulous fruits under the sun. A fruit that is just as scrumptious and versatile is the forgotten pear.
When fully ripened, aromatic pears offer a honeyed juicy meat underneath a soft outer flesh. Sometimes the juices are so immense that the juice dribbles down your chin with the first tantalizing bite.
Pears have two distinct classes of species; Asian and European. The Asian pear is round shaped and has a crunchy flesh. The European pear is more “pear” shaped and has a softer flesh. The best type of pear for baking depends on the cook. For example, pears that hold their shape when cooked are Anjou and Bosc pears. Pears that fall apart when cooked are your Bartlett pears. In fact, they turn to mush when heated. Sometime bakers or cooks like to combine the two types of pears. A mixture of Bosc and Bartletts and in a pie is exquisite – Bartletts give you a great pears sauce while the Bosc pears hold their shape. The mixture actually makes the perfect baked pears.
The pear is highly nutritious. They are high in vitamin C and vitamin A plus rich in minerals like iron, potassium, copper, manganese and magnesium. Pears also contain as well as B-complex like folates, riboflavin and pyridoxine (vitamin B-6). Additionally, pears are good source of dietary fiber and are moderate source of antioxidant flavonoids phyto-nutrients (zea-xanthin, beta-carotene and lutein).
Rendering to Mother Earth Living, pears have many health benefits that include fighting free radicals, protecting your heart, as a cancer preventative and helps control diabetes plus they are a hypoallergenic fruit.
Steel Cut Oats
Let’s take a look at oats. Today, this grain is highly valued for its nutritional content and because it is gluten free. They are a great source of fiber, protein, calcium and vitamin E. The best oats are steel cut. They have been unadulterated and contain a lot of nutritional value. If you cannot find steel cut oats, old-fashioned oats are a close second. Lastly, avoid instant oats; they are highly processed with little nutritional value and very mushy when cooked.
And for the recipe; it is relatively easy to prepare and fills the home with an amazing aroma of chai spices and sweet pears. It is the perfect meal to start your day and warm the spirit. It also makes a great dessert. Add a scoop of French vanilla ice cream once slightly cooled. Ah, the perfect treat is Chai Spiced Baked Pears with Steel-Cut Oats.
- 4 ripe pears, cored and diced (never peeled)
- 2 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or whole milk)
- 1 ½ TBLS walnuts, roughly chopped
- 1 ½ TBLS pure maple syrup
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp cardamom
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- pinch of cloves
- pinch of salt
- 1 cup steel-cut oats, gluten-free
- Preheat oven to 400°F/205°C.
- Lightly oil an oven-proof baking dish, preferably glass
- Put diced pears in oven-proof baking dish
- In a separate bowl, whisk milk, maple syrup, vanilla, cinnamon, cardamom, ginger, cloves and salt until well mixed
- Stir in oats and walnuts
- Pour mixture over pears
- Stir to combine
- Bake for about 25 to 40 minutes, or until tender.
- Substitute Medjool dates if you are not fond of nuts or you have allergies. Also, you can use honey instead of maple syrup for a sweetener.
- For an easy dish, place all ingredients in a crockpot or slow cooker and cook on low for eight hours or on high for four hours.
- For a nice fancy touch, combine only the oats and spices. Pour in milk then place pears in the oiled baking dish. Dot with oat mixture then bake.
- If you are a chocolate fanatic, add a touch to this recipe, you will love it.
Finding the Perfect Ingredients an Lowest Prices at Amazon
Bob’s Red Mill Organic Steel Cut Oats, 24-Ounce (Pack of 4) currently on sale for $12.36 was $23.95 Update now $10.48
Nature’s Path Organic Gluten Free Old Fashioned Oats, 18 Ounce (Pack of 6) today for $19.99
Coombs Family Farms Maple Syrup, Organic, Grade A, Dark Color, Robust Taste, 32 Ounce Jug today for $24.89
Butternut Mountain Farm 100% Pure Vermont Organic Maple Syrup, 12 Ounce today for $9.99
Simply Organic Cardamom, 2.82 Ounce currently on sale for $7.00 was $8.75
Whole pears on plate: Mark Bonica Into the (Food) Desert: Day 24 via photopin (license)
Oats over pears: smiteme 2012-06-29 – CV Apple-Pear Crumble – 0016 via photopin (license)
Pear & Chocolate Crumble: Foodmoods
Pear & pecan crumble with homemade vanilla ice cream: Stone Soup (Jules)
Peeled pears for baking: shutterbean one for each lady via photopin (license)