Partridge in a Pear Tree Dessert

  • 4 medium/large pears peeled, cored and halved (firmer variety or slightly under-ripe)
  • Juice from half a lemon
  • ¼ cup dark brown sugar
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon 
  • ¼ teaspoon allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3 teaspoons chilled butter cut into tiny cubes
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pecan pieces
  • Store-bought pie crust

For the partridge, roll out pastry crust and cut into bird shapes (see photo reference). Bake according to package instructions (or until light golden brown) and set aside.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a 7x10 baking dish with non-stick spray. In a small dish, combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg and salt. Set aside.

Set the pears (sliced side up) in the pan. Combine the lemon juice and vanilla and brush over the pears (to prevent browning). Sprinkle with brown sugar mixture and spread the cubed pieces of butter evenly on top of the pears.

Bake for 30 minutes sliced side up. Turn the pears sliced side down and baste/spoon the caramel over the top of the pears to prevent browning. Bake for an additional 20-40 minutes (depending on variety of pear – check doneness with fork). Top off with remaining caramel sauce and crushed pecans. Serve with vanilla ice cream and partridge pastry.