Pears with Ginger, Juniper Berries, and Caraway Cream

Preparation info

  • Serves

    4

    • Difficulty

      Medium

Appears in

Kitchen of Light: New Scandinavian Cooking

Kitchen of Light

By Andreas Viestad

Published 2003

  • About

JUNIPER BERRIES ARE IMPORTANT IN SCANDINAVIAN COOKING, BUT USING THEM IN DESSERTS IS NOT COMMON. I PREPARED THIS DESSERT WHILE WE WERE IN SVALBARD TAPING NEW SCANDINAVIAN COOKING. I FOUND THAT THE SPICES LENT AN INTERESTING LAYER OF FLAVORS AND AROMAS TO THE GENTLE AND UNCOMPLICATED PEAR. WITH THE WARM SWEETNESS OF HONEY AND THE CLEAN SPICINESS OF GINGER, THIS DEVELOPED INTO A DELICIOUS AND UNEXPECTED DESSERT.

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup honey, preferably heather honey
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 4 pears, such as Anjou, peeled
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped ginger
  • 8 juniper berries, ground or finely crushed
  • ¼ teaspoon chili powder
  • ½ cup heavy (whipping) cream
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seeds, crushed
  • 1 tablespoon aquavit (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon superfine sugar

    Method

    In a large nonstick skillet, heat the honey and butter until a dark caramel starts to form in the center of the pan. Immediately reduce the heat and add the pears, ginger, juniper berries, and chili powder. Cook the pears, turning them every few minutes, for 20 minutes over medium-low heat, or until tender but still somewhat firm near the core. Remove from the heat.

    Whip the cream in a small bowl until stiff. Fold in the caraway seeds, aquavit, if using, and sugar.

    Place the pears on plates and spoon the honey caramel sauce over, followed by the whipped cream. Serve immediately.