This warm and comforting pear and ginger crumble is blanketed with a crunchy, gluten-free oat and pecan topping. It’s a bit of therapy, and a whole lot of delicious.
This wasn’t supposed to happen.
I had a whole other post typed and ready to go for this week. But then Tuesday happened. Don’t worry, this is not a post about politics. What’s done is done, and I will move forward, strong in my values and my love for America. But my ground has been shaken, and I’ve required comfort. Like so many cooks, I turn to the kitchen when my world swells. Chop. Stir. Smell. Eat. It’s an anchor. I usually dive into simple classics, like banana bread, soup or pie. This pear crumble is right up there on the top of the list. I’m a sucker for craggly crisps, buckles and crumbles, preferably served slightly warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. This darling does not disappoint.
I used the same oat and pecan topping as the apple crisp in my cookbook, but scattered it over pears, which I seasoned with cinnamon, nutmeg and a touch of candied ginger. The ginger adds a little unexpected warmth and spice, like a pair of bright golden earrings. It’s the kind of dessert you can curl up with on a Wednesday night in your pajamas, or, better yet, share with friends.
Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and this pear crumble would be a lovely addition to any spread. It can be assembled without much hassle, and, if you’re lucky enough to have any leftovers, it makes for a killer breakfast the next day.
In the spirit of Thanksgiving, I invite you to my table. No matter your background, political leanings, ethnicity, sexuality or gender, I’m so honored to have you here. Thank you.
Pear & Ginger Crumble (Gluten-Free)
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter , divided, plus more for greasing
- 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats (regular or gluten-free), divided
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar , divided
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon , divided
- Pinch freshly ground nutmeg
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- ⅓ cup pecans
- 2 ½ - 3 pounds firm but ripe pears , peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch dice
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons chopped candied ginger
- Seeds from ½ vanilla bean
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- Vanilla ice cream or whipped cream , for serving (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 375˚F. Butter an 8-by-8-inch or similar sized baking dish.
- Fit the mini food processor with the s blade. Add ½ cup of oats, and process to the texture of coarse flour.
- Add ¼ cup of brown sugar, ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon, the nutmeg, and salt. Process to combine.
- Add the pecans, and pulse until coarsely chopped, about 6 pulses. Add the remaining ½ cup of oats, and pulse twice to combine.
- Melt 4 tablespoons of butter, and pour it over the mixture in the processor. Pulse until the butter is distributed and the mixture looks damp, about 10 pulses.
- Toss the pears with the lemon juice, the remaining 2 tablespoons of brown sugar, the remaining ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon, candied ginger, vanilla seeds and cornstarch. Transfer to the baking dish. Cut the remaining tablespoon of butter into small pieces, and dot it over the pears. Sprinkle the topping evenly on top.
- Bake the crumble until the pears are tender when pierced with a knife and the topping is golden brown, about 45-50 minutes. Let cool slightly.
- Serve warm or at room temperature, with a scoop of ice cream or dollop of whipped cream, if you wish. Storage: Leftovers can be stored at room temperature or in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. It makes for a great breakfast!