Well+Good’s recipe writer Tatiana Boncompagni is a wellness reporter, group fitness instructor, and mom of three based in New York. She’s also the co-founder of Sculptologie. She believes that truly good food nourishes both the body and the soul, and that healthy food should be easy to make and even easier to enjoy.
Apples seem to get all the love this time of year, showing up in all my favorite seasonal treats, from pie to post-workout smoothies, but there's more than one fiber-rich fruit at peak freshness right now. Poor pears often get overlooked at the farmers' market, even though they're sweet and packed with plenty of vitamin C, K, and fiber.
Personally, I love baking with pears. In Minnesota, where I grew up, my favorite cold-weather breakfast was oatmeal with pears and cinnamon. I'd add a little maple syrup for added sweetness but it was the subtle flavor and delicate, buttery texture of the pears mixed together with the hearty goodness of the oatmeal that made the bowl such a winner.
Inspired by those Minnesota mornings, I created a fall fruit crumble that's just as wholesome. I sub quinoa flour for regular wheat flour, making the recipe gluten-free. (It also adds a bit of protein.) Rolled oats pack in even more fiber while omega 3-rich grass-fed butter (you Bulletproofers probably already have some in your fridge) and walnuts add a dose of heart-healthy fat. I use very little sugar and opt for raw Turbindo sugar and maple syrup because it's less processed. The fresh-grated ginger adds zing, a touch of sophistication and other health benefits (such as boosting immunity, reducing inflammation and aiding digestion).
If you want to make this recipe vegan and dairy-free, you can swap in coconut oil for butter and almond milk creamer for milk. I like serving the crumble warm with organic vanilla ice cream (or coconut ice cream if you are vegan) at dinner parties or with a dollop of Greek yogurt for a tasty (and slightly more virtuous) next-day breakfast. If you ask me, it's even more delicious on the second day as all the flavors have time to come together and the gingery juice at the bottom of the pan turns into an outrageously delicious syrup.
Want to try it for yourself? Keep reading for the recipe.
Gluten-free Gingery Pear Crumble
Yields 6 Servings
For the Pears
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 to 1 tsp fresh grated ginger
For the topping
1/4 cup walnut halves, toasted and roughly chopped
1 cup quinoa flour (or chickpea flour)
1 1/4 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
6 tbsp grass-fed butter (or coconut oil)
1/4 cup raw Turbindo sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
3 Tbsp milk (or almond milk creamer)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. Wash and cut pears into slices.
3. On a small baking sheet, toast walnuts for five to ten minutes, until fragrant and lightly colored. Remove from oven and set aside.
3. In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine pears with juice of half of the lemon, maple syrup and ginger.
4. Transfer pears to a square 8 x 8 baking pan.
5. In a medium sized mixing bowl, combine flour and butter. Using your fingers, pinch butter and flour together just until you can't see the butter anymore. Add oats, sugar, cinnamon and salt. Use fingers again to pinch butter into the mixture. Add walnuts and stir with a spoon to combine. Add milk, the juice of half a lemon and vanilla and stir again to combine. The mixture should be lumpy and will not come together. It should be slightly wetter in parts, drier and crumblier in others.
6. Using your hands or a spoon, evenly distribute topping over pears and transfer to oven.
7. Bake for 45 minutes. For a slightly more golden crust, turn on the broiler and broil on high for one minute, watching carefully to avoid burning the crust.
8. Remove from oven and let cool 20 to 30 minutes before serving.
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