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October 4th, 2013 | By Alicia Silverstone

During the holidays, it can be hard to get away from cream and butter-laden desserts. But this superhero Candied Ginger Pears dessert from my book The Kind Diet (p. 279), is delicious and sophisticated, and is a great option to serve to your guests!
Prep Time: 6 minutes | Cook Time: 30 minutes | Yields 6 servings
1 cup ground almonds
2 tbsp brown rice syrup
3 large or 4 small pears, halved and core scooped out
1.5 cup pear or apple juice
1 tsp ginger juice (grate 1″ fresh ginger and use your fingers to squeeze out the juice)
1 pinch of fine sea salt
1 tbsp kuzu mixed with 1 tbsp cold pear juice
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp lemon zest
4 tsp maple syrup (optional)
Heat a dry skillet over medium heat
Add the almonds and toast for 3-5 minutes, stirring constantly, until fragrant and golden brown
Transfer to a small bowl to cool
When cool, buzz the almonds in a food processor or blender until very finely ground
Heat the rice syrup in a small saucepan
Add the ground almonds and stir over medium-low heat until the mixture thickens and set aside
Arrange the pears in a deep skillet, cut sides up.
Add the pear or apple juice to the pan along with the ginger juice and salt
Cover the pan, bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and simmer for 7-10 minutes, or until the pear halves are soft
Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pears to a serving platter, reserving the cooking liquid
Fill the hollow of each pear with some of the ground almond mixture
Stir the diluted kuzu into the reserved cooking liquid, and heat for 3-5 minutes, stirring constantly, until the sauce thickens
Remove from heat and stir in the lemon juice and zest
Pour the sauce over the pears and serve
For extra sweetness and some color, drizzle each pear with 1 tsp maple syrup.

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