Salt Slab-Grilled Pears with AmarettiSteven Raichlen
Amaretti-stuffed pears grilled on primordial slabs of salt. The salt slab accentuates the sweetness of the pears. Serve this with Smoked Whipped Cream.
Salt Slab-Grilled Pears with Amaretti
- Yield: Serves 4
- Equipment: 4 individual salt slabs, hand-held smoker
- 12 to 15 amaretti cookies (for 1 ½ cups crumbled cookies)
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon grated lemon zest
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 stick unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 4 large ripe pears
- 1 cut lemon (optional)
- Smoked whipped cream, for serving
1: Make the filling: Place the cookies, sugar, lemon zest, and cinnamon in a food processor and grind to coarse crumbs. Add the butter and grind to a coarse paste.
2: Start with ripe pears (the sort that smell incredibly fragrant and feel gently yielding when pressed). Cut each in half lengthwise. Using a melon baller or spoon, remove the seeds and core. If you plan to prepare the pears ahead of time, rub the cut parts with lemon to keep them from browning.
3: Spoon the filling into the hollowed pears. The pears can be prepared several hours ahead to this stage.
4: Set up your grill for indirect grilling and heat to medium-high. Preheat the salt slabs away from direct flame according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Note: Salt slabs exposed to extreme temperatures can crack or explode, so try to heat the slabs gradually.
5: Place 2 pear halves on each heated salt slab. Grill away from the heat. Close the lid and indirect grill until the pears are browned and soft, 10 to 15 minutes. Insert a metal skewer to test for doneness. It should pierce the fruit easily. Serve the pears on the salt slabs.
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