I was unable to muster much energy tonight so the super simple recipe for Baked Pears contributed by M. O. to the 1906 Berlin Cook Book looked tempting. I suspect that M. O. is Meda Oberlander, sister of a prominent minister in the town of Berlin. I’m starting to suspect that her “M.O. (modus operandi)” is to contribute recipes using variations of her name. I don’t have any evidence — just a strong suspicion that she was instrumental in creating this community cook book.
I tried the recipe using just one pear since the recipe is flexible. I wiped and then cut the local Bartlett pear in quarters. I removed the core and put the four pieces skin side down in a baking dish. I sprinkled brown sugar on the tops and poured enough water to cover the bottom of the dish. I put it in the oven at 350 degrees and assumed they would be ready in half an hour (30 minutes). The pears were fresh and very hard so it was closer to 50 minutes before they were soft and “baked”. I had to add some more water to ensure they didn’t burn. I’d recommend starting with a softer pear.
I’ve made and eaten baked apples many times but I’ve never even thought about trying the same technique with another fall fruit — the pear! It seems logical and the result is similar, just tasting of pear instead of apple. The texture of pears are different, more grainy so it has never been my favourite fruit. However, if you like pears and have never tried baking one then this recipe is a start. You can always adapt and add a bit of cinnamon. I spooned some of the cooking liquid onto the pear pieces when plating it and I liked the result.
Prepare pears by wiping, then cut in halves or quarters as desired, put in a deep dish, sprinkle with brown sugar, add a little water to keep from burning.