Friday, October 22, 2010

Day Two Fifty Five - An Autumnal Pear GCF

Apples and pears seem to be the fruits of the moment don't they? And since it is such a spectacularly autumnal day, I thought I'd suggest a yummy roasted pear GCF, straddling the line between savory and sweet, but all around delish!

Pears can be divided into two distinct categories -- European and Asian. The Asian variety resembles what we think of apples to look like. They have a crisp crunchiness at the height of their ripeness. European pears are those that we traditionally think of when a pear comes to mind -- rounded and curvy with a softness to them. For today's GCF, I'd like to make a GCF featuring Bosc Pears.

Bosc Pears have a light brown exterior with a light interior that is soft and sweet. Denser than most other pears, they hold up excellently to roasting, which is why I chose them today. Traditionally bottom heavy with a slender top, these are easily identifiable pears! Grown primarily on the West Coast and overseas, its worth the trip to delve into one of these guys...

So lets get to roasting these babies!!!

Slice thin pieces of our pear and toss with some maple syrup, cinnamon, nutmeg, a little bit of clove, a touch of sea salt and a little olive oil to coat them. Place this in the oven at 250 for about 15 minutes or until the pears are golden brown. While the pears are roasting you can prep everything else which is going to be simple! Grab a nice crunchy French baguette, some roasted hazelnuts and an aged Manchego style cheese, Zamorano. I recommend utilizing Zamorano because it is a bit richer and more nutty than its younger cousin, Manchego which will pair excellently with your roasted pears and hazelnuts. Made in the Castille-Leon region of Spain, this is a hard sheep's milk cheese aged for at least six months. During the aging process, the rind is washed with olive oil imparting a dark exterior with an olive-y, vegetal mouth feel. It is sweet and creamy with a full bodied gamey-ness to it! Perfect for our roasted pears, you couldn't ask for better.

Once your pears are done, slice your baguette in two and place the pears on the bread allowing the roasting juices to sink into the bread; and then top them with a nice thick slice of Zamorano and some crumbled hazelnuts. Toast away! Enjoy this with a nice medium bodied red wine.

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