I feel kind of sorry for the pear. This time of year, everybody is all pumpkin spice this and caramel apple that. But pears, the other fall fruit, get left out in the cold. Let’s knit all the poor unloved pears a sweater. Or better yet, let’s bake a treat highlighting their deliciousness.
The pear hasn’t fallen off my radar because I have a neighbor with a tree in her front yard. The first few years we lived in our current home, I would see her sign advertising pears for sale and veer sharply onto her side street. Then I gave her my phone number and asked her to call me when pears were ready each year. Because literally anything straight-from-the-tree is my very favorite. The first time I stopped, my little boy was in his pumpkin car seat carrier. Now she’s lucky if my kids don’t try to scamper up her tree and give her tree a shake down. Poor woman probably wishes she never put that sign out.
The second reason for my mad pear love is the recipe for Turkish Coffee Pear Bread from ‘The Joy of Coffee,’ by Corby Kummer. Not only does Mr. Kummer write expertly on the subject of coffee, he includes a hefty chapter detailing recipes for some of the best baked goods to complement your caffeine fix. Before my foray into paleo and gluten-free baking, his Best Banana Bread recipe was my go-to. And his cardamom-spiced pear bread laced with coffee grounds was one of my favorite quick-breads with an unexpected twist.
I decided two years without this Turkish Coffee Pear Bread was long enough. So I heavily adapted the recipe to maintain the complex and unique flavor of the original, but swapped out many of the other ingredients to create a gluten-free and paleo version. In place of all-purpose flour, I use Bob’s Red Mill Coconut Flour. In place of the butter, I used almond butter and a little Gold Nugget Ghee. I even used almond extract instead of vanilla because I was feelin’ sassy with all my modifications. This updated recipe also uses much less sugar, just 1/3 cup of coconut sugar versus the 1 cup total sugar in the original recipe! So, it’s still a treat beside your cup of coffee, but a more virtuous one.
So, give the poor ol’ pear a chance and add this quick bread recipe to your fall baking repertoire. I strongly advise topping it with some more ghee. Of the chocolate honey variety. You’re welcome.
Cardamom Spiced Pear Bread (Gluten-free and Paleo)
1 cup coconut flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
1/3 cup coconut sugar
4 tsp. ground coffee (regular grind)
1 tsp. cardamom
1 1/4 cups pear pureé, (from four ripe pears, peeled, cored and pureed in food processor)
1/3 cup almond butter (I used Kirkland brand natural almond butter)
2 Tbl. ghee
2 large eggs
1 tsp. almond extract (or be a rule-follower and use vanilla)
1/4 cup plain yogurt (You can use regular or coconut milk to make dairy-free. For this batch of bread, I used siggi’s vanilla Swedish style drinkable yogurt)
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Use coconut oil to grease a 9×5 loaf pan.
Whisk together dry ingredients, set aside.
Peel, core and pureé, ripe pears in your food processor. Then add all the other wet ingredients to your pear pureé and pulse just until evenly combined.
Gently stir wet ingredients into dry ingredients, fold until well-combined.
Pour batter into your pan and smooth out the top with a spatula. Bake for 40 minutes to start, then test for done-ness with a toothpick. The bread is done when your toothpick comes out clean.
Cool in pan, then transfer to wire rack until completely cool.