Pear, walnut and stem ginger crumble

After such a virtuous first post of 2013, my second of the year is a comforting crumble, which is a leap back to the indulgence of the festive season, brought about by this Drunken Plum Frangipane Tart, which was thelittleloaf’s shamelessly decadent start to the year.

I’ve been desperate to make a crumble for weeks but got so completely caught up in the festive whirlwind that I forgot all about it until this week. With it being such a grey and miserable day, I felt the need to opt for something with a little extra warmth and being a devout fan of ginger, I went for this pear, stem ginger and walnut combination. The pears are cooked in the syrup from the stem ginger, resulting in a pear and ginger caramel, which flavours the fruit and bubbles up around the sides of the nutty, coarse crumble.


Serves 4
150g or five and one quarter oz plain flour
125g or four and a half oz unsalted butter
a pinch of salt
45g or one and a half oz demerara sugar
25g or three quarters of an oz caster sugar plus a tablespoon for the pears
35g or one and a quarter oz walnuts
two large pears, roughly 500g
four pieces of stem ginger
two tablespoons of stem ginger syrup
Preheat the oven to 180°C (fan oven)/ 200°C/ Gas Mark 6/ 400 degree Fahrenheit and lightly grease the baking dish you’re using to bake your crumble.

Rub together the flour and butter using your finger tips. You need really cold butter which is cut into small cubes to make this easier and you need to rub until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs with a few pea sized chunks. I always favour doing things by hand when baking, but feel to pulse the mixture in food processer. Stir in the sugar and walnuts, crumbling them using your finger tips to give an uneven rubble. Leave this mixture in the fridge whilst you prepare your pears

Peel and core the pears and cut them into large chunks. I used British comice pears but use what ever variety you like, and even feel free to replace with apples. Next, cut the stem ginger into small pieces and mix together with the pears, stem ginger syrup and caster sugar in your baking dish.

Top the fruit with the crumble mixture, heaping it into the middle to allow some of the pear and ginger caramel to bubble up around the edges. Bake the crumble in the oven for around half an hour or until the topping is crisp and lightly golden. Serve with custard or yoghurt, if you’re trying to keep up the pretense of New Year healthiness.


5 Responses to “Pear, walnut and stem ginger crumble”
  1. Emma says:

    Love Comice pears – and I really love crumbles:)

  2. spree says:

    Fiona…I lost you there for a while! Happy to find you though! Comice pears are such wonderful things, and I love how you’ve paired them with the ginger here. This sounds about perfect to me!

    • Big Hungry Gnomes says:

      Lovely to have you back Spree. Your dark chocolate torte with ginger whipped cream sounds like a pretty beautiful way to combine Comice pears and ginger too

  3. Delicious combination. I’ll be ready for more crumbles come Feb 🙂

    • Big Hungry Gnomes says:

      Stay strong Wendy. I’ve got another virtuous winter salad, more suited to your admirably healthy January which I’m writing now and should be posting next week.

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