September 13, 2012

Pear-Walnut Crisp



This dessert holds a very special place in my heart.  Not only do I usually make it with pears from my mother-in-law's farm ...

... see them growing on her trees? ...




... it's also the dessert I served the night my parents and my husband (then boyfriend!) met for the first time ... back in February, 2003.  Hard to believe Mark and I have been together for almost ten years now!

We had been dating for only about five weeks when these all-important introductions were made.  My parents and I were leaving on a cruise to celebrate my Dad's retirement, so they had traveled to my place in Charlotte the night before we left.  I invited Mark over for dessert so the three of them could meet.

Meeting-the-boyfriend-or-girlfriend's-parents is so nerve-wracking, isn't it??  I'm sooooo glad I don't have to go through that anymore!

Anyway, apparently the introductions evening went well ... 'cause just four months later, Mark and I were engaged ... and Mom, Dad, and Mark get along fabulously.

Now, that night's Pear-Walnut Crisp was made with store-bought pears.  But now ... now I'm fortunate to have a supply of late-summer home-grown pears.

We've found that our home-grown pears have a thicker skin than store-bought ones and are too 'chewy' in the crisp, so we peel them.  When working with store-bought pears there's no need to peel.  Unless, you know, you have an issue with pear skin.  Then by all means, peel away to your heart's content.
Just toss pear slices with a bit of sugar and cinnamon, top with an oats-and-brown-sugar-and-butter topping, toss in some chopped walnuts, bake it up ...


... and you've got one delicious and comforting dessert.



Throw on a scoop of vanilla ice cream, frozen yogurt, or a little whipped cream ... or go plain ...whatever you prefer.   Mmmmmmm ... one of my favorite desserts.  And not just because of the wonderful memory that goes with it.


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Pear-Walnut Crisp
Source:  Adapted from Cooking Light magazine
Ingredients
6 c. sliced pears (about 3 lbs.)
1 T. fresh lemon juice
1/3 c. sugar
1 T. cornstarch
1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon, divided
1/3 c. flour
1/2 c. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
3 T. cold butter, cut in small pieces
1/3 c. oats
1/4 c. coarsely chopped walnuts


Directions
1.  Core pears and cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch thick slices.  (You don't need to peel the pears unless they have a thick skin.)  Combine pears and lemon juice in a 2-quart baking dish; toss gently to coat the pears with lemon juice.

2.  Combine sugar, cornstarch, and 1 teaspoon of the ground cinnamon; stir together with a whisk.  Add this mixture to the pears, tossing well to coat the pears.

3.  Combine flour, remaining 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, brown sugar, and salt.  With a fork, pastry cutter, or your fingers, work in the butter pieces until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.  Add oats and chopped walnuts.  Sprinkle this mixture evenly over the pears.

4.  Bake at 375 degrees for 40 minutes, or until pears are tender and the topping is golden brown.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

This crisp is delicious plain, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt, or with freshly whipped cream.

Enjoy!



10 comments:

  1. Saw you on Nifty Thrifty. Love that this is low in calories too. Will definitely be back.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Lovely desert My little daughter would definitely love this Pear-Walnut Crisp, specially with a scoop of Praline and a Caramel fudge

    ReplyDelete
  3. This recipe sounds delicious, I love pears so I have to make this.
    I signed up for you Blog hop earlier and posted the wrong picture. Once I hit enter, it was too late. Sorry about that, thats for hosting a blog hop. I put one on my blog now.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Oh my goodness! I'm going to go get some pears NOW! We'd love for you to link this up to our party! http://housewivesofriverton.blogspot.com/2012/09/riverton-housewives-round-up-33.html

    ReplyDelete
  5. When I saw "pears" I just had to get over and "pin" ...we had ton's of those pears here in southeast GA...I cook lot's and put up in the freezer for recipes just like this..thanks for sharing I'm new follower..visiting from Miz Helen

    ReplyDelete
  6. Your photos are awesome and a lovely presentation for your delicious Crisp. Hope you are having a great weekend and thank you so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Come Back Soon!
    Miz Helen

    ReplyDelete
  7. We have a pear tree and I'm always looking for new recipes that use pears. This looks divine. I hope I can persuade you to come over and share on my Blog Fest: http://fresh-eggs-daily.blogspot.com/2012/09/farm-girl-friday-blog-fest-2.html

    ReplyDelete
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  10. Tracey,
    I recently bartered for some backyard pears I'd been eyeing a few blocks away. Those tough skins were no match for a day in the slow cooker in Nomnivorous' salted caramel pear butter. Yum! This crisp looks delicious. Thanks for giving me the link to include in my upcoming Band Fruit Fundraiser Recipe Round Up! It will be published on 12/4/2013!

    ReplyDelete

I love your comments. I read and appreciate each and every one. Thank you so much for visiting The Kitchen is My Playground! {NOTE: Captcha word verification is on to turn away the 'spambots' ... I apologize for the commenting inconvenience!}

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