Sautéed Pears with Vanilla Whipped Cream
This fast, not-too-sweet dessert takes advantage of the abundant harvest of Anjou and Bartlett pears. Although this dish is best made just before serving, the pears can be prepared a day in advance and reheated in a skillet with a little butter. Serve the pears warm with a cool glass of late-harvest Gewürztraminer.
4 large, firm pears, such as Bartlett or Anjou
4 tablespoons butter
Juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon maple sugar
1/2 pint heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 tablespoons maple syrup
1. Halve pears and remove core and stems. Cut into 1/4 -inch slices.
2. Melt butter in large skillet over medium heat. Add pears, lemon juice and ¼ cup maple sugar and cook about 10 minutes, stirring very gently, until pears are golden brown, liquid has reduced to a glaze and sugar has caramelized.
3. Whip cream with vanilla extract until soft peaks form.
4. To serve, place pears in a shallow bowl or plate with a dollop of whipped cream. Drizzle with maple syrup and sprinkle with remaining maple sugar.