A Great Savory Fall Dessert – or Appetizer
Every now and then I appreciate a cheese course for dessert and I adore combining cheeses with something sweet – like quince paste, candied nuts or a drizzle of honey. This grilled caramelized pears recipe is perfect for the fall when pears are at their best. I like to use either an Anjou or a Bartlett. The pears get a nice coating of butter and sugar and are caramelized indoors in a grill pan. You could make these on a flat bottomed skillet, but then you wouldn’t get the nice grill marks. I used my Lodge Reversible Grill/Griddle. The recipe is easily scaled up. This makes a nice appetizer for a holiday party, too.
- 2, firm but ripe pears
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, melted
- ⅓ cup sugar
- 2 cups mesclun mix or baby lettuces
- Small amount of your favorite oil and vinegar salad dressing (I like one made with balsamic, Dijon mustard and extra virgin olive oil)
- 2 ounces Gorgonzola
- Coat a grill with nonstick spray; heat over medium heat while you prepare pears.
- Cut pears in half, core and brush all sides, inside and out with butter. Place sugar on a flat plate and roll the outer side of the fruit in the sugar to coat, then press the cut side flat against the sugar in the plate to coat thoroughly. Basically do what you have to do to coat the pear evenly with sugar.
- Place pear’s flat, cut side down on grill pan; it should sizzle. Cook for at least 3 minutes; do not move too soon or you won’t get a nice glazed surface. Flip over once the pear shows a nice golden brown caramelized surface and cook second side until it looks the same. Total cooking time will be less than 10 minutes, most likely 4 to 6 depending on size and ripeness of pears and heat of pan.
- While pears are cooking, coat the greens lightly with dressing and place on serving plates. As soon as pears are done, place a pear half on each place, crumble cheese over all.