Saturday, March 26, 2011

Pear Chocolate Crisp

This isn't really the time of year I usually think of pears, but I am still receiving them from our CSA - so gotta use them...

This is inspired by a Pear Crisp with chocolate idea from the Caprial and John Pence who are wonderful chefs and have a restaurant and cooking school in Portland - I got to know them thru their PBS cooking show.  This is where I first encountered the idea of a fruit crisp with chocolate, which, I think we can all agree, is genius. 

Please don't be put off by the picture which looks like a handful of dirt on a pretty plate.  You can eat it at room temperature, in which case you will stumble upon the bittersweet chocolate in small chunks, or warm it up a bit and the chocolate will be more melty - either way its yummy.

I shared a link to this recipe at this week's cravings at the blog Mom's Crazy Cooking and slightly indulgent tuesdays at the blog simply sugar and gluten free.

I love ginger in anything, but this may be a minority view - if you don't like it so much, leave it out or use less. 

I used maple syrup as the sweetener because I think it complements the deep chocolate flavor.  You can use agave, honey, or even brown sugar.

4 - 5 cups peeled, cored and sliced pears
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
2 - 4 tablespoons chopped candied ginger (depending on how much you love it!)
2 tablespoons corn starch
5 ounces chopped bittersweet chocolate (I use Scharffenberger)

2 cups almond flour
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup unsalted butter (or coconut oil, melt before measuring)
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.         

Mix together the pears, agave, ground ginger, candied ginger and cornstarch and mix well.  Place in an oiled 8" x 8" baking dish.  Top with the chopped bittersweet chocolate.

To prepare the topping, place the almond flour, cocoa powder, 2 tablespoons agave, vanilla, butter and salt in a large bowl and mix until you form a crumbly crust. Top the pears with the crust. Place in the oven and bake about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool. 

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