So roasted pears with cheese and nuts isn’t for everyone – fair enough! As I said, a younger me would not have touched it with a bargepole. What else to do with 2, 3, or 4 too soft pears?
In The Fruit Testing Fruit Demolishing Toddler Years, my resident Fruit Bat would try every single apple/pear/plum. She left me with bowlfuls of fruit that hadn’t passed her test, stacking up in the fridge, the places where her little teeth had bitten into them browning and softening. And now her sister wouldn’t eat it. And they were spoiling because the skin was damaged. And I couldn’t afford to waste a single fruit.
So often, the humble crumble would come to my rescue. Two apples and two pears? In. Three plums and one stick of rhubarb – oh, that’s my *favourite*.
But … just pear? I hate to say it, but I prefer it to apple crumble! Sorry mum. With some vanilla essence. or half a vanilla pod if you’re feeling fancy/flush, the whole bowlful is light and floral. And with heart-stopping pours of double cream, you’ll love your leftover pear crumble.
TIP: if you don’t have the time to eat all your soft pears before they go off, and you know that you won’t get through the crumble, make the crumble and freeze it! easy preserving!
(Slightly Soft) Pear & Vanilla crumble
1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
175 grams plain flour or half and half wholemeal + plain
125 grams butter/hard vegan alternative
75 grams sugar (I used dark brown but any will do)
Pinch of salt
LOADS of cream/ice cream to serve
Oven proof bowl
Tea towel/kitchen paper
20-30 minutes prep
40 minutes to bake
Mix flour, sugar and salt
Turn the oven to 180C
If you want, sift the flour, salt and sugar together
Cut the butter/vegan alternative into chunks around 1cm
Rub the butter into the flour mixture until it looks sandy (I have hot hands so it’s never perfect)
ONLY WHEN THE CRUMBLE IS READY peel, quarter and core the pears
Place the pears in your oven proof dish
Sprinkle over the vanilla extract
Gently sprinkle the crumble mixture over the top – don’t pat down, else you’ll have a shortbread top
Place in the oven and bake
Check after 30 minutes; it’s ready when the juice bubbles up from underneath
You can store the crumble for a few days in your fridge
If you don’t have the time to eat the pears, freeze the crumble in the dish and eat within three months
Got a question? Ingredient you need help with? Get in touch: