Oven-roasted Pears with Caramelized Shallots, Figs and Gorgonzola

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So many vibrant flavors of the season come to play in this dish, yet each is very simply prepared to retain its individuality. Serve this gorgeous combination as a cozy brunch item, a light supper or as a small plate in a more complex, autumnal menu scheme.

Ingredients

For the pears and figs

For the shallots

For the final dish

Preparation

To make the pears and figs

Preheat oven to 400° F.

Cut the pears in half lengthwise and remove the stem and core. Cut each pear half crosswise into about 6 slices and place cut side down in a baking dish just large enough to hold all 6. Fan each half forward a bit to expose some of the white pear flesh. Combine the maple syrup and balsamic vinegar and brush each pear half lightly. Sprinkle with a little black pepper.

Cut each of the figs in half and place, cut side up, on a separate baking sheet. Brush each fig with a little of the maple syrup mixture. Reserve the rest for the dressing.

Pour the cider around the pears and place in the oven. Roast for about 20 minutes (depending on ripeness) or until the pears are tender. Roast the figs for 10 minutes or until they puff slightly in the center. (You may boil the cooking liquid from the pears down to a syrup to serve on the side if you like.)

To make the shallots

In a heavy sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat and add the pancetta. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes; stir in the shallots and sage. Stir-fry the mixture just until the shallots are lightly golden. Turn the heat to medium-high and add the remainder of the maple syrup and balsamic mixture. Cook, stirring, until the mixture is bubbly and lightly reduced. Season with salt and pepper.

To serve

Divide the shallots between 6 plates. Top each with a half of pear, 3 fig halves, a wedge of Gorgonzola and any of the additional garnish options listed in the Note section.

Notes

Additional garnish options: dried cranberries, toasted hazelnuts, sauteed chanterelle mushrooms, fried sage leaves, roasted butternut squash

Recipe by Lynne Vea, PCC Chef

Source: Demonstrated on KING 5's "New Day Northwest" show, which aired September 14, 2011.

Lynne Vea

ABOUT OUR CHEF: Lynne Vea

Lynne Vea is a graduate of the Executive Chef Program at Le Cordon Bleu, Paris and has been cooking with PCC Natural Markets since 2001. Featured on King-5’s "Gardening with Ciscoe," she demonstrates easy and delicious recipes using seasonal ingredients.

Lynne is an admired PCC Cooks instructor, teaching a variety of popular PCC Cooks classes throughout the year.

She loves to collect old cookbooks, hunt for wild berries, and cook seven-course dinners where the guests are encouraged to dance and cavort between courses.

Find more recipes from Lynne.

Learn more about our recipes. View guidelines »

More about: cheese, figs, pears, shallots

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