Maple-baked pear halves with vanilla bean ice cream and candied nuts
A stunning dessert that melds hot and cold, sweet and spicy, smooth and crunchy – they’ll love this one!
When I cook fruit, my policy is "less is more." So on a recent search through the fridge for something to spruce up my baked pears a tad, I chanced upon a bottle of maple water I had just purchased. The stuff’s not cheap, and for good reason. Maple water comes straight from maple trees, and contains nutrients that revive the tree in early spring. It tastes slightly sweet and a little bit woodsy – perfection in my book for a hydrating drink!
And perfect, too, on baked pears. I paired (pun intended) these beauties with all-natural vanilla bean ice cream, chopped nuts and a drizzle of caramel. Ohhhhh yeahhhhh. Gorgeous. Five-star restaurant worthy. And did I mention super easy?
- 4 Bosc pears
- 1/2 cup maple water*
- 1 pint vanilla bean ice cream
- 1 cup candied pecans or walnuts
- Caramel syrup, optional
- Dried cranberries, optional
Preheat oven to 350. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
Wash pears and slice them in half, leaving stem intact on one half.
Use a melon baller or teaspoon to scoop out the seeds neatly. Place pear halves cut side down on parchment paper.
Pour maple water and a dash of cinnamon over pears.
Bake for 15 minutes, or until pears just begin to soften. Remove from oven.
Put candied nuts into a ziploc bag and crush gently with a mallet or hammer to produce small pieces.
Serve each pear half with a scoop of ice cream, drizzle of caramel sauce and a sprinkling of nuts and cranberries.
*If you can’t find maple water, mix 1/4 cup maple syrup with 1/4 cup water.