The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

pear bread favorite?

Siren223's picture

pear bread favorite?

I have a crate full of ripe pears and am looking for a recipe that will utilize them...anyone have a quick bread recipe for the pretty things?

SDbaker's picture

Hi Siren, I don't have a bread recipe but yesterday I made the Pear Crisp in the current issue of Cooks Illustrated.  It was Great!  That should help out with 6-7 of your pears.

 SD Baker

Siren223's picture

Thank you! I might just have to do that instead...maybe with cranberries as well

SDbaker's picture

There are several variations also in the article.  I added oats for the topping...actually I think I doubled the topping.  (let's face it, most of us only eat a crumble for the topping - the fruit is just a convenient justification!)

SD Baker

browndog's picture

Here's a bread and a cake. The bread is from King Arthur's 200th anniversary cookbook. The cake was clipped from a newspaper years ago.

Vermont Pear Bread

(KA note: It is best made and refrigerated the night before you serve it.)

9 tbsps butter, at room temperature,

1 cup suger,

2 large eggs

2 cups AP flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 cup buttermilk

1 cup coarsly chopped pears

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/2 cup chopped walnuts


Preheat your oven to 350F.


Cream the butter until light. Slowly add the sugar, beating constantly. add the eggs one at a time, beating thoroughly after each addition.


Combine the dry ingredients thoroughly. Add them to the egg mixture alternately with the buttermilk. Fold in the pears and vanilla. Pour into two lightly greased, 4 1/2 x 8 1/2-inch loaf pans or one large tube pan.


Bake for 35 to 40 minutes (loaf pans) or 1 hour (tube pan). Cool to room temperature and chill for several hours. Slice and serve with apple or pear butter.


Fresh Apple or Pear Cake


3 large apples or 3 large pears

2 teaspoons of cinnamon

1/2 teaspoons nutmeg

3 tablespoons sugar

3 cups unbleached flour

1 1/4 cups sugar

1 cup vegetable oil, preferably canola oil

4 large eggs, at room temperature

3 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup orange or apple juice or apple cider


Spray nonstick tube or Bundt pan with vegetable spray and wipe around with paper towel.

Peel and dice fruit. Toss with cinnamon, nutmeg and 3 tablespoons sugar. Set aside for at least 30 minutes. Toss again.

Combine remaining ingredients in a large bowl of electric mixer. Beat on low speed just until well-mixed, about 2 minutes. Beginning and ending with batter, layer batter and fruit in pan. Bake for 60-65 minutes, until top is brown and cake shrinks from sides of pan. Place pan on rack and cool 10 minutes. Invert on another rack and cool completely. Just before serving, sift confectioners' sugar lightly over cake.

SDbaker's picture

These aren't bread baking per se (hope you all indulge me), but these will use up your pears! 

What about juicing it, or making a puree' and making a sorbet?

Prep and freeze (you may need a quick parboil)

Can them!

Let's see.. you can poach them in a little pinot noir, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, and sugar.  Serve that with a lemon sorbet or vanilla bean ice cream.

There's pear-upside downcake.

Or, my favorite salad..take the pairs, cut in half, core, roast cut side down ontop of sprinkled sugar to caramelize the pears.  Slice into a fan on a salad plate, cover with greens of your choice, sprinkle with gorgonzola, candied spiced walnuts (below), and a light vinagrette made with walnut oil. 

You can find the walnut oil at international food shops, the international aisle at the grocery store if it's not with the other oils, or try Whole Foods or Trader Joe's if you  have one of the those near you.

Candied spiced walnuts (these are great).  I forget the exact measurements but have made it so many times, I end up altering it a few times...  Parboil the walnuts for about 30-45 seconds in a rolling boil, drain, add to a bowl while hot and still somewhat wet then add confectioners sugar and stir (about half the volume of the nuts).  Fry these gooey nuggets in hot oil until golden careful, there is fine line between golden brown and black.

Remove from oil, place on a sheet pan and sprinke while hot and sticky with a small about of salt, fresh cracked pepper, and cayenne pepper.  Keep spreading them around to seperate them. The combination of the candy shell, bitter nut, light salt, and spicey amazing.  (they make a great gift in themselves).

Hope this has unleashed a little culinary creativity for your pears!


SD Baker

KipperCat's picture

Though I've never tried grilling the pears beforehand!

Here are several that I've collected - though not tried personally. Some of these call for convenience foods, but would be easily adapted by making your own pizza crust, etc. Looking through these really makes me wish for your surfeit of pears!


Lightly coat pizza dough (fresh or Boboli thin or...) with olive oil

Cover with grated cheese(s) of your choice (Asiago, white cheddar or mozzarella)

Add a layer of slices of Bosc pears

Add a layer of chopped walnut pieces

Sprinkle with crumbled gorgonzola

Bake in heated oven at 400'F for 10-15 minutes until cheeses melt and nuts brown slightly.

~~The combination I use is white cheddar and mozzarella with the gorgonzola over the top.


Caramelized Pear Gingerbread with Molasses Ice Cream

Recipe courtesy Emeril Lagasse, 2004

*Difficulty:* Medium

*Prep Time:* 25 minutes

*Inactive Prep Time:* 2 hours

*Cook Time:* 1 hour 15 minutes

*Yield:* 1 (10-inch) cake, 8 to 10 servings

2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons unsalted butter, divided

3 large, firm-ripe pears, such as Bosc, peeled, cored, and sliced into

1/2-inch wedges

1/4 cup light brown sugar

1/2 cup chopped pecans

3 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda

3/4 teaspoon salt

1 1/4 teaspoons ground ginger

1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3/4 cup sugar

2 large eggs

1 cup vegetable oil

1/2 cup cane syrup or molasses

3/4 cup boiling water

5 tablespoons minced crystallized ginger

1 recipe Molasses Ice Cream, recipe follows

In a large skillet, melt the butter over high heat. Add the pears and

cook until the pears are tender and slightly caramelized, but still

retain their shape, 2 to 3 minutes on each side. (You may need to cook

the pears in 2 batches so as not to overcrowd the pan.) When the pears

begin to have a nice color on both sides, add the brown sugar and pecans

and cook, stirring gently, to coat the pears with the sugar. Remove from

the heat and cool slightly.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F, and using the 2 teaspoons of butter,

lightly grease a 10-inch round cake pan with 2-inch sides. Arrange the

slightly cooled pears and pecans in a single layer in the bottom of the

cake pan. Pour any syrup from caramelizing into the cake pan as well.

Into a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, salt, ginger,

pumpkin pie spice, and cinnamon. In a separate medium bowl, whisk

together the sugar, eggs, vegetable oil, molasses, and boiling water.

Add sugar mixture to the flour mixture, blending just until combined.

Fold the crystallized ginger into the batter and pour into the prepared

pan over the pears.

Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center

of the cake portion comes out clean. Allow cake to cool on a wire rack

for 5 to 7 minutes. Place a large plate or cake stand on top of the cake

and carefully invert the cake. Cool slightly and serve with Molasses Ice


Molasses Ice Cream:

2 cups heavy cream

1 cup whole milk

1 cup sugar

2 large egg yolks

2 tablespoons molasses

Combine the cream, milk, and sugar in a medium-heavy saucepan and bring

to a gentle boil over medium heat. Remove from the heat.

Beat the egg yolks in a medium bowl until frothy and lemon colored,

about 2 minutes. Whisk 1 cup of the hot cream in a slow, steady stream

into the egg yolks. Gradually add the egg mixture to the hot cream,

whisking constantly. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally,

until the mixture thickens enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 5


Remove from the heat and add the molasses, then strain through a

fine-mesh strainer into a clean bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing

it directly against the surface to keep a skin from forming. Refrigerate

until well chilled, about 2 hours.

Pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and freeze according to the

manufacturer's instructions. Transfer to an airtight container and

freeze until ready to serve.

Yield: about 1 quart


Cranberry Pear Tart with Gingerbread Crust

Recipe courtesy of Gourmet magazine

*Difficulty:* Easy

*Prep Time:* 9 hours

*Cook Time:* 1 hour 40 minutes

*Yield:* 1 10-inch tart

*User Rating:* 4 Star

For the pear mixture:

4 cups cranberry juice cocktail

1/2 cup sugar

4-inch cinnamon stick

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

4 large firm-ripe pears, halved lengthwise, peeled, cored, and reserved

in a bowl of cold water acidulated with the juice of 1/2 lemon

1/3 cup dried cranberries

For the crust:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

3 tablespoons firmly packed brown sugar

2 teaspoons ground ginger

2 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

3/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 stick (1/2 cup) cold, unsalted butter, cut into bits

1 large egg yolk

2 tablespoons dark molasses

Raw rice for weighing the crust

For the filling:

3 large eggs

1/3 cup sugar

1/2 cup sour cream

1/4 cup milk

1/4 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon freshly grated orange zest

Make the pear mixture: in a kettle combine the cranberry juice, the

sugar, the cinnamon stick, and the lemon juice, bring the mixture to a

boil, and add the pears. Heat the mixture until it just comes to a

simmer and simmer the pears gently for 10 to 15 minutes, or until they

are just tender. Remove the kettle from the heat, stir in the

cranberries, and let the mixture cool. Chill the mixture, covered, for

at least 8 hours. The pear mixture may be made 2 days in advance and

kept covered and chilled.

Make the crust:

In a food processor blend together well the flour, the brown sugar, the

ginger, the cinnamon, the allspice, and the salt, add the butter, and

blend the mixture until it resembles coarse meal. In a small bowl stir

together the egg yolk and the molasses, add the mixture to the flour

mixture, and pulse the motor, blending the mixture until it is combined

well but still crumbly. Turn the mixture out into a 10inch tart pan with

a fluted removable rim and press it onto the bottom and up the side of

the pan. Chill the crust for 30 minutes. Prick the crust with a fork,

line it with foil, and fill the foil with the rice. Bake the crust in

the lower third of a preheated 375 degree oven for 15 minutes, remove

the foil and rice carefully, and bake the crust for 10 minutes more. Let

the crust cool in the pan on a rack.

Transfer the poached pears and half the cranberries with a slotted spoon

to paper towels to drain, discard the cinnamon stick, and reserve the

syrup with the remaining cranberries. In a small bowl whisk together the

eggs, the sugar, the sour cream, the milk, the vanilla, the zest, and a

pinch of salt, stir in the drained cranberries, and spoon half of the

custard into the crust. Slice 4 of the pear halves crosswise on the

diagonal, arrange them decoratively on the custard with the unsliced

pear halves, and spoon the remaining custard around the pears. Bake the

tart in the middle of a preheated 325 degree oven for 50 to 55 minutes,

or until the custard is just set. Remove the rim of the pan and let the

tart cool on a rack. The tart may be made up to this point 8 hours in

advance, cooled completely, and chilled.

In a saucepan boil the reserved syrup and cranberries over moderately

high heat until the syrup is reduced to about 1 cup and is jellylike in

consistency and transfer the cranberries with a slotted spoon to a plate

to cool. Brush the pears with some of the cranberry glaze and arrange

the cranberries around the edge of the tart. Serve the tart warm or chilled

Episode#: CL9229

Copyright © 2003 Television Food Network, G.P., All Rights Reserved


Pear Ginger Cake (from Pioneer Organics)

Serve this dense, spicy cake by itself, or with vanilla ice cream or sweetened mascarpone.

Servings: 8 to 10

2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 teaspoon ginger

1/2 teaspoon cloves

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 cup butter

1-1/2 cups brown sugar

4 eggs

1/2 cup molasses

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 cup pecans, chopped

2 concord pears, cored and chopped


Pear & Almond Tart

Makes 1 nine-inch tart (serves 8 to 10)

For the Pasta Frolla (Crust)

Makes enough dough for one nine-inch tart, about 1 pound

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup fairly cold unsalted butter <you can use shortening or lard if you prefer>

2 whole eggs - or 5-6 tablespoons ice water or chilled wine or whiskey

Optional: zest from a lemon

Place the flour, sugar and salt in the mixer and combine. Add the butter and optional lemon zest and mix until the pieces are the size of grapes. Add the eggs (or liquid), and mix until the dough just holds together and is not crumbly. Wrap it in plastic or foil and let rest in the refrigerator for about a half hour, or up to four days.

Roll out the dough with a heavy rolling pin, but do not put too much pressure on it. It will be quite fragile. Lightly dust with flour as needed to keep the dough from sticking to the marble or wood surface or the rolling pin. If the dough breaks, do not be overly concerned because it can be easily repaired. Simply push it back together again, or tear a piece off the edge to mend a gap.

Blind bake. Prick randomly over the entire surface with a fork. Weight it down and bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees untill VERY LIGHT gold. Cool and use or store in an airtight container for up to 10 days. It can be frozen for up to three months.

For the filling:

2 or 3 medium sized pears - ripe, but firm - peeled and cored.

1 1/4 cups granulated sugar

2 cups blanched Almond meal

3 eggs

Cut the pears into 6ths. Mix the other three ingredients together, whisking the eggs before adding to the dry ingredients. Pour the batter into the prepared shell and arrange the pears in a pattern on top of the batter. Bake about one hour - 350 degrees - or until deep gold. The batter will puff up so put foil or a cookie pan on the bottom of the oven <just in case>. Cool slightly and serve or serve at room temperature, but not ice cold.

Serve plain or garnish with mascarpone cheese with lemon zest added, vanilla ice cream or cold zabaione cream.

Note: I would think you could do this with a commercially prepared pie shell, though it wouldn't be the traditional crust made with sugar and butter.


Pancetta, Pear and Parmesan Scones - Recipe courtesy Tyler Florence

*Difficulty:* Easy

*Prep Time:* 30 minutes

*Cook Time:* 30 minutes

*Yield:* 8 scones

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1/4 pound pancetta or bacon

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus 6 tablespoons cold cut into cubes

1 pear, cut into small cubes

2 cups all purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

Pinch kosher salt

Pinch sugar

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1 teaspoon finely chopped rosemary leaves

1 cup heavy cream, plus more for brushing

1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan, plus extra for garnish

Coat a small skillet with olive oil and cook the pancetta over medium

heat until it is crisp. Drain on paper towels; break it up into pieces

when it is cool. Wipe out the skillet and heat 2 tablespoons butter over

medium heat until it starts to brown; be careful not to let it burn. Add

the pear cubes and cook them until they are soft but still holding their

shape, about 5 to 7 minutes. Set aside on a plate to cool.

Heat oven to 450 degrees F.

Sift into a bowl the flour, baking powder, salt, and sugar. Add the

remaining butter and cut it in with a pastry blender or your hands until

it resembles coarse bread crumbs. Stir in the pepper, rosemary, and

pancetta. Add the cream; mix just until the dough has come together.

With floured hands, gather the dough into a ball and place it onto a

floured surface. Divide the dough into 8 pieces and form them into

balls. Place them onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Press a

well into the center of each with your thumb, place 1 teaspoon of the

cooled cooked pears into the well, and pinch the scones closed. Sprinkle

the tops with the cheese. Bake the scones for 12 to 14 minutes, or until

the tops are golden brown. Remove from the baking sheet and cool on a

wire rack. Sprinkle with some more parmesan.

Episode#: FO1E17

Copyright © 2003 Television Food Network, G.P., All Rights Reserved


Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Last year someone gave me a case and I peeled most of them, cut them in half, and using a melon baller removed the cores.  Then I poached them in a pot of water.  Put them in clean round liter jars and added the boiling water to cover.  They sealed nicely and we had pears all winter and spring.  I didn't add sugar, the pears were sweet by themselves and flavor kept.

Mini O

KipperCat's picture

Minnie, did you freeze the jars or store them at room temperature?  May be a silly question, but I know very little about home canning.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

at room temperature or slightly cooler.

Mini O

KipperCat's picture

Thanks for the canning link. It was the lack of a water bath that made me think these would need to be frozen.  For some reason the water bath intimidates me. It just seems like the tipping point from a manageable project to too much work!

When you poach the pears, how long do you cook them?  I.e., just a bit, until soft or whatever. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

The pears do get cooked twice in the whole process.  If you make just a few jars, a deep sauce pan will do the trick for the bath, I have some goofy insert with holes that can lie on the bottom of the pot.  The link is pretty clear as to how to time it. 

For the first heating up of the pears: take a cold pan and add the pears and cover with water, then remove the pears and boil this water (and sugar if you like).   When boiling add pears at once.   When water starts to return to a boil, turn off heat and start packing the jars.   Then you have to bathe them using a hot water bath.  It's not too hard and heaven knows a loaf can take longer.  Hope that helps.   One of the trickiest monuvers is getting the hot jars out of the hot bath.  Once I did it with a slip knot and a shoe string and lassoed the jars.  What ever works. 

Mini O

Ramona's picture

I also do canning.  But I have to say that it is not advocated to set the jars upside down to set and seal.  They should be water-bathed to prevent botulism.  This isn't just any food poisoning that will make you sick, it is deadly.  Just thought I should let you know.  I am going to can some pears myself tomorrow. 

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven