JoyFoodly is delighted to create recipes each month for Whole Foods Market’s ‘Now in Season’ program. Be sure to look for our recipe cards in your Northern California stores, and don’t forget to speak with your Whole Foods Market produce person when picking out your fall pears. They always have the best tips and easy recipes—and often offer tasty samples.
I adore Fall. My kitchen starts to smell of cinnamon and winter squash roasting, and pears. I put pears in everything I can, from a quick relish for a seared pork chop, to my morning smoothies, and they are the stars of my favorite dessert recipes. If you know me well, you know I’m not a baker. So when it comes to dessert, I keep it simple. The amazing thing about my Buttery Baked Pears is that they taste like I’ve worked harder than I actually did. Now you can, too.
Have you ever picked up an underripe pear in the market and scratched your head wondering how to pick a great pear? Here are a few tips to help your next trip to the store a breeze!
How to pick a perfect pear:
- Pears ripen from the inside out, so the best spot to check for ripeness is the area just next to the pear’s stem, which is the most narrow. Just give that area a gentle press, and if it gives, your pear is already ripe.
- If you can not find pears you feel are ripe already, have no fear! They will continue to ripen. Just put them in a room temperature spot in your kitchen and wait a few days patiently until they soften up.
- Or if you’re like me and truly don’t have time to wait, make my Buttery Baked Pears recipe which is kind to the underripe pear! The firm pear will cook through in the oven and turn out perfectly. That’s my kind of cooking.
In this recipe, I indicate a Bosc pear. That just happens to be what was in season and available at my local Whole Foods Market now. When you make this recipe at home, explore whatever variety is local and in season in your home town. When I work with kids in the kitchen, one of my favorite food adventures is to taste and compare different types of the same produce item. Why not let your child help you pair their favorite pear for your next kitchen adventure!
- bosc pears, 4
- butter, 3 TBS
- yogurt, 1 cup
- honey, ⅓ cup
- cinnamon, ½ tsp
- pistachios, ½ cup (optional)
- Take 5 minutes to get out all your ingredients, measuring and cooking equipment needed, and place them on a cookie sheet within easy reach.
- Wash all produce.
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- Melt butter over low heat or in the microwave and set aside.
- Peel pears, cut into halves, and remove core.
- Brush pears with butter and place them, cut-side down, on a parchment-line baking sheet. Sprinkle with cinnamon.
- Bake pears until they are caramelized and tender, about 25-30 minutes.
- While pears are baking, in a saute pan, dry toast pistachios over medium low heat, for about 5-7 minutes.
- Transfer the pears onto a platter, cut-side up, and let cool. Fill each pear half with a spoonful of yogurt, drizzle with honey, and sprinkle toasted pistachios on top to serve.
If you’re looking for more ways to cook simple, yet nourishing meals for your family, join my Joyful 12 Kitchen Learning Lab. It’s a members only course for busy parents and adults. We cook nine veggies and three fruits together each season with other families that are looking for time saving ways to cook great food for their loved ones. Join the Joyful 12.