Xmas Pear Pupus

What’s Cooking in Gail’s Kitchen? Enjoyable Eats: Xmas Pear Pupus! A popular Polynesian appetizer, served hot or cold, comes from the Hawaiian word “pūpū”. It can be anything from a buffet table of skewered meat, tempura veggies, raw fish, and other finger foods to simple cold trays of tropical fruits, deviled eggs, edamame, and smoked salmon. Remember to make everything bite-size when planning an informal gathering. Because pear trees live such a long time, their fruit is very symbolic during the holiday season. The pear often represents immortality, wisdom, and health; a treat fit for royalty. By creating a pear pupu platter, you’re giving your guests a gift of intangibles they may treasure for years to come. Get the conversation started. Serve freshly sliced ripe pears and cinnamon dusted pear chips with a wheel of warm Brie. How festive!

XMAS PEAR PUPUS

Ingredients:

2 pears, thinly sliced for baking

1 tablespoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1 wheel Brie cheese, warmed

2 tablespoons cranberry relish

2 tablespoons sugared pecans

2 pears, cut into wedges for eating

Instructions:

Cinnamon Dusted Pear Chips must be made in advance. Preheat oven to 225°. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Combine sugar and cinnamon. Pat dry sliced pears. Place them on the parchment paper in a single layer. Dust with cinnamon-sugar mixture. Bake 3 hours until dried and crisp. Allow to cool on a wire rack.

For Pear Pupus, warm a wheel of Brie cheese in a 350°oven for 5-10 minutes to soften. Spread cranberry relish over top. Sprinkle with sugared pecans and chopped pears. Serve with pear wedges and cinnamon dusted pear chips.

Lavender Creamed Honey Pears

What’s Cooking in Gail’s Kitchen? Enjoyable Eats: Lavender Creamed Honey Pears! Whenever pears come into season, I feel as though a festive dessert is in order. But then again, I’m spoiled. Family members “gift” us with a different fruit-of-the-month selection all year long. A box gets delivered to our doorstep with a little card that tells us about the delectables inside. Often there are serving suggestions as well as ripening and storage tips. Then my mind begins to wander as I plan different ways to come up with recipes. That is, unless I simply succumb to their aroma and eat them as they are. Here’s a festive dessert that will get you raves through the holidays.

LAVENDER CREAMED HONEY PEARS

Ingredients:

1 large pear, skin on, halved, and cored with a melon scooper

2 tablespoons sweet white wine

2 tablespoons creamed honey

1/8 teaspoon cinnamon

1 tablespoon butter, room temperature

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

For Lavender Filling:

1/2 cup vanilla Greek yogurt

1 tablespoon creamed cheese, softened

2 drops lavender extract

1 smidgen dried lavender buds

1 drop lemon extract

1 nip granulated citrus peel

1 teaspoon granola, for garnish

Lavender buds, for garnish

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 375°. In a small baking dish, place pear halves upright. Pour sweet wine over them. Slightly warm creamed honey on Low setting in the microwave for 30 seconds. Drizzle honey over pears. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Dot each pear half with butter. Finish with vanilla extract. Bake, uncovered, for 40 minutes. Carefully remove dish from oven. Baste pears with the juice. Turn each pear over, skin side up. Bake 20 minutes longer until tender. Using a spoon, transfer each pear half, flipping over with skin side down, to a dessert dish. The sauce will thicken slightly as it cools. Spoon reserve sauce over pears. While pears are baking, make the Lavender Filling. Combine vanilla Greek yogurt and creamed cheese. Mix until smooth. Fold in lavender extract, dried lavender buds, lemon extract, and granulated citrus peel. Keep refrigerated until ready to use. To serve, place a heaping dollop of filling into each pear half. Sprinkle with granola. Garnish with lavender buds. Serve warm.

Eating My Way Through the Alphabet: Letter V

What’s Cooking in Gail’s Kitchen? The Chow Down: Vanilla Laced French Toast! Here’s a twist on ordinary French toast. If you prefer the outside to be crispy, don’t be ashamed to coat the bread with crushed cracker crumbs before dropping it into the buttered skillet. It not only seals in the flavor, but also produces a “to-die-for” custard filling. Forget soggy bread, go instead for a golden brown crunch drizzled in dark maple syrup and topped with the rich flavor of vanilla glazed pears. Have I got your attention?
VANILLA LACED FRENCH TOAST 
Ingredients:

2 eggs

1/2 cup light cream

2 tablespoons sugar

1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1 cup Ritz crackers, crushed*

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon 

1/8 teaspoon nutmeg 

1-2 tablespoons butter

6 slices Hawaiian sweet bread

Glazed Pear Topping, if desired**

Powdered sugar, sprinkling

Pecan halves, as garnish
Instructions:

Whisk eggs, light cream, sugar, vanilla extract, and cinnamon in a shallow bowl. Set aside. On a sheet of waxed paper, combine crushed crackers, cinnamon, and nutmeg with a fork. Melt butter on low heat in an iron skillet. Do not burn. Increase heat to medium. Dip bread slices in egg mixture, coat both sides in cracker crumbs, and place in the skillet. Cook 3 minutes until brown. Turn. Cook 3 minutes longer. Remove to a platter. Repeat until all slices are used. Serve with butter, maple syrup, and fruit, if desired. Garnish with a sprinkling of powdered sugar and pecans. 
*I receive no recompense for mentioning Ritz Crackers. 
**Recipe for Cinnamon Glazed Pears can be found at this link. 

https://snapshotsincursive.com/2015/12/28

Eating My Way Through the Alphabet: Letter S

What’s Cooking in Gail’s Kitchen? Something to Savor: Spiced Pear Blueberry Cobbler! For a truly gourmet experience, this dessert is spot on. You may notice a very distinct flavor, but can’t quite put your finger on it. Not only is it different, it’s alluring and extraordinary. I’m here to tell you, the secret ingredient is cardamom. Not only is it a key ingredient in the spiced pear combination, but if you scroll down to the bottom, you’ll find it’s the grande finale and the perfect compliment for this exotic cobbler. Cardamom sprinkled on ice cream that has been drizzled with honey is practically like eating two desserts…in one. Bonus points!
SPICED PEAR BLUEBERRY COBBLER 
Ingredients for Filling:

1 cup blueberries 

1 tablespoon cornstarch 

3 pears, peeled, cored, and chopped

1/4 cup orange marmalade 

1 tablespoon agave nectar 

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon ginger

1/8 teaspoon cardamom 

1/8 teaspoon cinnamon 
Instructions:

In a shallow bowl, place blueberries. Sprinkle with corn starch. Turn to coat. Set aside. In a medium bowl, toss pears with orange marmalade, agave nectar, and lemon juice. Add ginger, cardamom, and cinnamon. Gently fold in blueberries. 
Ingredients for Batter:

1 cup sugar 

3/4 cup butter 

2 cups flour

1 teaspoon sea salt 

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon cinnamon 

1/3 cup brown sugar

1/4 cups almonds, sliced
Instructions:

Preheat oven to 350°. Spray a 9″x13″ pan with nonstick oil. Set aside. Cream together sugar and butter. Mix flour, sea salt, and baking soda together. Add dry ingredients. Batter will be crumbly. Spread 3/4 batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Layer fruit filling, spreading to edges. Crumble remaining batter on top. Sprinkle with brown sugar and sliced almonds. Bake for 30-35 minutes. Serve warm, a la mode with vanilla bean ice cream drizzled with natural honey and sprinkled with cardamom. 

Eating My Way Through the Alphabet; Letter P

What’s Cooking in Gail’s Kitchen? Food for Sharing: Pear Camembert Flatbread! It’s seldom I get the cart before the horse, but I had to share this phenomenal flatbread with you, simply because I couldn’t wait any longer. Let’s refer to today’s recipe as a Prequel, shall we? Perhaps it will whet your appetite in anticipation of what lies ahead. As promised, the Tomato Jam recipe will be featured in the upcoming post entitled, Eating My Way Through the Alphabet; Letter T. Some things are simply worth the wait. 
PEAR CAMEMBERT FLATBREAD 
Ingredients:

1 tablespoon corn meal

1 prepared-dough naan round

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/4 cup tomato jam*

1 pear, peeled, stem and seeds removed, thinly sliced

2 ounces Camembert cheese, diced

1/4 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded
Instructions:

Preheat oven to 400°. Sprinkle corn meal onto a baking sheet that has been sprayed with nonstick oil. Brush both sides of naan with olive oil. Place on top of corn meal. Bake 5 minutes; set aside. Spread tomato jam evenly over naan, leaving a crust edge. Arrange pear slices over crust. Scatter Camembert and mozzarella cheeses over top. Bake 10 minutes until pears are soft, cheese is bubbly, and crust is golden. Remove from oven. Cool slightly; then cut into wedges. 
*Tomato Jam recipe is featured at the following link. 

http://Snapshotsincursive.com/2016/11/21

Eating My Way Through the Holidays: Special Edition 

Eating My Way Through the Holidays! What’s cooking in Gail’s Kitchen? Home For the Holidays: Cinnamon Glazed Pears! Presenting a dessert as sweet as honey and as satisfying as a piece of pie. Make one for yourself or enough for a crowd. The aroma alone will make your house smell amazing! Split pears are the perfect size for filling with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream or a dollop of decadent whipped cream. After dinner cordials are also a nice compliment. 
CINNAMON GLAZED PEARS
Ingredients:

3 slightly firm pears; peeled, halved, and cored

6 tablespoons sweet dessert wine

3 tablespoons vanilla extract

3 tablespoons honey

3 tablespoons butter, unsalted

Cinnamon to taste
Instructions:

Preheat oven to 375°. Arrange pear halves in a small baking dish, cut side up. Sprinkle cinnamon, then vanilla over pears. Dot each pear with butter. Drizzle honey over each pear half. Pour in the sweet wine. Roast for 40 minutes. Using oven mitts, carefully remove the dish from the oven. Tilt the dish so the juices pool in one corner. Take a spoon and baste the pears. Turn each pear over and return to the oven to roast 20 minutes longer or until a paring knife inserts easily. Baste occasionally for a caramelized finish. The sauce will thicken slightly. Serve warm. 

Eating My Way Through the Alphabet; Letter O

What’s Cooking in Gail’s Kitchen? The Daily Special: Oven-Glazed Pears! Presenting a dessert as sweet as honey and as satisfying as a piece of pie. Make one for yourself or enough for a crowd. The recipe measurements below only need one pear, which is two servings. Perfect for dessert for two. The aroma alone will make your house smell amazing!
OVEN-GLAZED PEARS
Ingredients:

1 slightly firm pear; peeled, halved, and cored

2 tablespoons sweet dessert wine

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1 tablespoon honey

1 tablespoon butter, unsalted

Cinnamon to taste
Instructions:

Preheat oven to 375°. Arrange pear halves in a small baking dish, cut side up. Sprinkle cinnamon, then vanilla over pears. Dot each pear with butter. Drizzle honey over each pear half. Pour in the sweet wine. Roast for 40 minutes. Using oven mitts, carefully remove the dish from the oven. Tilt the dish so the juices pool in one corner. Take a spoon and baste the pears. Turn each pear over and return to the oven to roast 20 minutes longer or until a paring knife inserts easily. Baste occasionally for a caramelized finish. The sauce will thicken slightly. Serve warm with vanilla bean ice cream. 

Eating My Way Through the Alphabet; Letter F

What’s Cooking in Gail’s Kitchen? A Second Helping of Fresh Pear Tart! Even if you are only slightly crazy about pears, one taste of this beautiful caramelized fruit dessert will have you boasting of connections to Le Cordon Bleu. The secret to making this incredible tart is baking it in an iron skillet; first on the stove and then in the oven. 
FRESH PEAR TART
Ingredients:

1 sheet of Puff Pastry

6 ripe pears; peeled, cored, and sliced

1/2 cup butter

1/2 cup sugar

1 teaspoon cinnamon 
Instructions:

Preheat oven to 375°. Place the butter in the iron skillet on the stove. As it melts, add the sugar and arrange the pears carefully to look appealing when the tart is served “bottom up”. Increase the heat and cook gently until sugar is caramelized. Sprinkle in the cinnamon. Once the sugar has turned golden brown, remove the pan from the heat and gently lay the puff pastry over the fruit. Be sure it fits snugly to the pan. Place the skillet into the oven. Bake 15-20 minutes until the pastry crust is golden brown. Remove from the oven and cool slightly before turning upside down onto a serving platter. Cut and serve warm. Add a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream for the finishing touch. Smile lovingly and say, “It’s just a little something I made with all my heart!” ❤️