I nearly had a food emergency yesterday afternoon. When I returned home from spending the weekend in Toronto, I was greeted by eight perfect pears on my kitchen counter, and every single one was perfectly ripe. My mom had thoughtfully sent Mike and I these pears in a Harry & David gift box last week. When I left for Toronto on Friday, they were all hard as rocks.
If you like pears and try to eat them often, you know that there is a very short window of opportunity for optimum ripeness. Once the bright green color matures to a warm, freckly harvest yellow and the fruit yields to gently pressure all around, you must eat right away. I guessed that my pears were one day away from this stage--perfect for eating, but still suitable for certain recipes. Since I knew I could not eat eight pears in the next day and a half, I set out to find a recipe that would put these beauties to good use.
First I tried recent issues of some of the many food magazines I have scattered around the house. I didn't find anything great there or on the recipe websites that I like. Not only did I want something simple (I had gotten up at 4:45am that morning to catch my flight!), but I wanted to make something I could freeze for Mike to taste when he got back from his business trip in a couple days. I was determined not to let these pears go to waste. The Oregon-grown Harry & David pears are the best I have ever had, so failure was not an option.
Then I remembered the very cool google search tool that Elise recently added to her Simply Recipes blog. It looks for matches exclusively within the food blogs that Elise has on her own comprehensive list. Within seconds, it pointed me to a recipe for pear bundt cake that I remembered seeing on Baking Bites. Just when I was getting excited to use the brand new bundt pan I bought, I noticed a comment referring to this great recipe for pear muffins.
I happened to have every single ingredient for these easy, low-fat muffins, so my search ended there. I liked that Nic used whole wheat flour and plain yogurt in this recipe. Despite their healthy profile, the muffins came out very moist and sweet thanks to the delicious pears. I just polished one off as I wrote the previous paragraph, and they make a very satisfying snack.
I must thank Nic and Elise (not to mention mom, for sending the pears). If I ever have another impending emergency, I will look no further than my fellow food bloggers for help! I absolutely recommend Nic's great recipe whether you are desperate to save some pears or you actually want to plan ahead and avoid any possible produce drama.
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