There is something about individual or mini sized dishes that is just the best! Maybe its knowing the whole portion is just for you, or the fact that you can savor a dish without worrying about your family eating your portion (you all know what I mean). Or maybe its just they they look so cute. Anyways, when we created our wedding registry, I was certain that I absolutely needed these mini cocottes. Luckily, they were also dishwasher safe, so my husband agreed we could add them to our list. (Dishwasher safe was his main stipulation about the items I wanted for the registry–he knows he does more of the washing). So while this dish might not be practical for a large thanksgiving dinner, I knew that I wanted to use these mini cocottes for my Thanksgiving dessert anyways (and for those of you more practical than me, you can also use a regular sized 8X8 dish).
This year, I also wanted to try a new flavor combination. Pears are great for fall, but I feel like they get overlooked at Thanksgiving for apples and pumpkin? I wonder why that is? I decided to show off the pear with this excellent combination of pear, chai and caramel crisp. The chai is really just a cinnamon cardamom combo. The caramel adds a lovely sweet and salty flavor. (I also used store bought for this recipe… the last thing you probably have time for on Thanksgiving is making your own caramel). Lastly, vanilla ice cream on top! And if you know me, you know I do not skip the ice cream. A la mode forever!
As you many know, I feel strongly that you do not need to follow recipes exactly, even today’s recipe for my pear, chai and caramel crisp. For each recipe I create, I like to give substitution options so you can use what you have rather than buy a specific ingredient just for one dish (i.e. if you cannot find cardamom.) See below the recipe for substitutions.
Pear Chai & Caramel Crisp
- 2 pears
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp cardamon
- 1 tbsp corn starch
- 4 tbsp caramel
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1/2 cup old fashioned oats
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 4 tbsp butter
- ice cream to serve
Preheat oven to 400 F. Spray 4 ramekins or one 8×8 baking dish with cooking spray.
Chop pears into tiny pieces.
Combine the pears, 1 tsp of cinnamom and 1 tsp of cardamon and the cornstarch in a small bowl. Mix until combined
Add the pears to each ramekin.
Add 1/2 tbsp of caramel to each ramekin
In a medium bowl, add the flour, oats, brown sugar, and remaining spices.
Mix together and then evenly add to each ramekin.
Place in the oven for 20 minutes.
To serve top with ice cream and the remaining caramel.
Below are some possible substitutions to help you use what you already have on hand or to meet your dietary restrictions. I don’t like to go out and buy one ingredient for a recipe when I know I already have something similar on hand! Also make your you use old-fashioned oats instead of the “quick” version.
- Cardamom: I know it can harder to find. It adds excellent flavor but could be omitted if you cannot find it.
- Gluten-free: I love crisps because they are so easy to make gluten-free for my family. Oats are naturally gluten-free (double check the label) and you can sub the flour for any gf flour. You can even put oats in a food processor and make your own oat flour! Skip the corn starch too if needed.
I also love crisps because they are so easy to make! Want more crisps (or crumbles, what’s the difference anyway)? Try this one for a pumpkin hazelnut crumble!
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