Warm Pear & Ricotta

September 05, 2022

Warm Pear & Ricotta

Ever notice how produce eaten in season seems to just taste better? This is true for nearly all fruits and veggies but I find the taste difference to be particularly profound when it comes to fruit. The less time and travel between the tree and your plate, the juicer, sweeter, more nutritious, and tastier fruits are. 

Pear, ricotta, maple, cinnamon

September is the peak of pear season in Ontario. When naturally ripened, pears can be incredibly juicy and range from slightly tart to super sweet, depending on the variety. In fact, there are over 3,000 know varieties of pears around the world - varying by size, shape, sweetness, and crispness. In Ontario, the most common varieties are the Bartlett, Clapp's Favourite, Anjou, Bosc and Flemish Beauty.

Why pear? As a fruit, I find the pear often gets outshined by its more ‘exotic’ cousins, like the cherry, peach, or mango. Often displayed in the produce aisle next to other ‘commoners’ like the orange and the apple, the pear often gets overlooked. An unfortunate fact, as the pear is a mighty fruit, rich in history and nutritional value.

woman in blue dress cutting a pear



Pear is considered to be one of the oldest grown species, growing organically as far back as the New Stone Age (over 20,000 years ago) and being cultivated by humans since 3,000 years ago. In Asia, (particularly 6th century China), the pear was considered a delicacy for the wealthy. It’s also been an important staple in the European diet for generations. The Spanish expression, “Esto es La Pera” (translated as “this is the pear”) when referring to a particularly wonderful or enjoyable experience - is used in modern day Spain to this day.

In addition to its ‘fruitful’ history, the pear carries a robust nutritional profile. Pears are rich antioxidants, flavonoids, and fiber. Eating one medium pear provides about 6 grams of dietary fiber, as well as 12% of your daily vitamin C needs, 10% percent of vitamin K and 6% potassium. It also has traces of calcium, iron, magnesium, riboflavin (vitamin B-2), vitamin B-6, and folate (vitamin B-9).

pears with cinnamon on baking tray

Pears, (especially red pears) also contain the phytochemical carotenoids, flavonols, and anthocyanins. What are phytochemical you may ask? They are substances naturally produced by plants - like the fruits and vegetables in our diets - which are beneficial to our health, mostly through their antioxidant properties which help to fight inflammation and neutralize free radicals.

Another benefit of the pear is its versatility. The pear’s perfect proportion of texture, flavour, acidity, and sweetness makes it easily enjoyed fresh, cooked, spiced, fermented, dried, or juiced. Today, I share with you one of my personal favourite ways to enjoy the mighty pear; baked with ricotta, cinnamon, maple and walnuts.

woman pouring cheese into baked pears



This simple recipe is incredibly easy to make and can be enjoyed as a snack or light dessert at your next backyard barbecue. Each portion contains approximately 230 calories, 23g carbs, 13g fat, 8g protein and 4g dietary fiber. The recipe is based on 4 servings: 2 pears, each yielding 2 servings each. However, you should easily be able to fit 4 pears on one baking tray if you’re entertaining and want to make 8 servings. Simply double all of the measurements below.

woman pouring walnuts on a baked pear

Warm Pear & Ricotta Recipe

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 20-25 minutes

Servings: 4 servings (1 serving = half a pear)

Ingredients:

  • 2 small pears, halved and cored
  • 1/2 cup ricotta cheese
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon (plus a pinch for garnish)
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, crushed
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 tbsp maple syrup, plus 1 tbsp more for drizzle (also works well with honey)

    Directions:

    1. Preheat broiler or toaster oven to 350 degrees F and line a baking tray with non-stick baking paper.
    2. Slice the pears in half. Use melon baller (or a spoon) to take out the core and make a round hollow.
    3. Place pears on a baking sheet and bake for 12-15 minutes until tender.
    4. Meanwhile, combine ricotta, maple syrup cinnamon and salt in a small bowl.
    5. Remove pears from oven and scoop ricotta mixture into the hollows. Bake for another 8-10 minutes.
    6. Remove from oven and lightly drizzle with remaining maple syrup, sprinkle with added cinnamon use walnuts for garnish.
    warm pear with ricotta maple and walnuts on plate
    MORE LIKE THIS
    Get your fruit fix over lunch with my delicious and nutritious Peach, Mint & Arugula Summer Salad recipe. 
    ABOUT THE AUTHOR
    Ewa Reid is a Registered Holistic Nutritionist, certifying Fertility Support
    Practitioner, nutrition & fertility educator, wife, and mother. You can learn more about Ewa on our About page.



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