Sweet Sunday: Maple Pecan Stuffed Vanilla Pears
Last night I ate a guiltless (or near guiltless) dessert. Who can feel bad about eating fruit and nuts for dessert? This sweet treat didn’t contain butter or white sugar, and I was still in heaven when I began eating it (not that I don’t love butter – I do). My fiancee even had seconds! At first bite, the slightly crisp pear softened. The light hint of vanilla in the pear mixed with the maple flavor of the crunchy, diced pecans. If you know me well, you know that I love dessert. I just can’t say no to sweets. I’m getting better, but this was a nice compromise that still allowed me to eat dessert without feeling bad about it.
Ingredients for Maple Pecan Stuffed Vanilla Pears:
*Recipe inspired from Jennifer Vagios’ blog, Jennifer Vagios. Yonut.
**Serves 2 (if you each want 1 whole pear) or 4 (if you each want half)
1 teaspoon of coconut oil (or butter if you prefer) (for nut mixture)
1/2 cup pecans, diced
1 tbsp of maple syrup (for nut mixture)
1 teaspoon of coconut oil (for pears)
2 Bosc pears, halved and then cored (I chose Bosc pears because they hold up well when after baking, though I’m sure you could experiment with other varieties)
1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla
1 tbsp of maple syrup (for pears)
The sinfully simple directions to creating this sweet confection:
1 – Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Then, cut your pears in half lengthwise and core them. I cored mine using a teaspoon. Then dice the pecans using a back and forth motion while the tip of the knife remains on the cutting board. Continue with this until the pieces are about 1/4 to 1/2 the size of a pea.
2- Heat the coconut oil over medium heat. Allow it to melt in the pan. When heated, add the pecans. Stir the pecans to allow for all of them to be coated in the oil. After about 5 minutes of toasting, add the maple syrup. Stir again and allow for the flavors to come together for another minute. Transfer the pecans to a small bowl while you begin cooking the pears.
3 – In the heated pan, add the remaining coconut oil. Then add the pears (after the oil is heated and melted – which should not take very long). Keep the pears face up and add the cinnamon. Sprinkle over the tops of all pear halves equally. Allow the bottoms of the pears to become slightly brown (let them cook about 3-5 minutes).
4 – Turn the pears over and let them cook on the front for about 3-5 minutes. Then after that time add the maple syrup. Let that seep into the pears for about 1 minute.
5- Arrange the pears in your choice of a pan. I used a loaf pan and the pears fit perfectly. You do not need to grease it, as the pears already have coconut oil on them. Spoon any remaining maple syrup into the pears and on the tops of the pears. Then, fill in the area you cored with the pecan mixture. Allow the pears to cook for about 15-20 minutes (or longer if you would like them completely soft – like apple pie).
Let me know how you like it! Post any of your favorite guiltless dessert recipes here (as a dessert lover, I am always interested).