Pears and Gorgonzola are classic flavour pairings. These Pear Gorgonzola Appetizer Bites are not your classic way to use them, however. Often they are baked together in a flatbread. Or tossed in a salad. These incredibly tasty little morsels are a different way to enjoy that delicious and classic combination.
Why Your Pears are Hard When You Buy Them
I was given a huge bag of pears, and it's been a challenge figuring out what to do with them. Did you know that pears are one of the few fruits that get harvested unripe? If left on the tree to ripen, they ripen from the inside first, so by the time the outside is soft, the pear is overripe. That's why they are always hard when you buy them in the store, and it's a good idea to plan ahead when you need pears for a recipe.
Here's a Secret to Speed Up Ripening Your Pears
My pears are still unripe a week after harvest. So to speed it up a bit, I put some in a brown paper bag. Then popped a ripe apple in there with them. Another, "did you know": apples release a ripening hormone, called ethylene, which helps to ripen other fruits around them. Nature is amazing. Viola, two days later I had pears that were the exact ripeness. I wanted them sweet, but still fairly firm for baking. For eating fresh, I would have left them in the bag for another day.
Pears, like all raw fruits, are a great addition to any healthy diet. They're high in fiber and packed with antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals. Check out the health benefits of pears on Pears: Health Benefits and Nutritional Information
These Pear Gorgonzola Appetizer Bites
I was making these Pear Gorgonzola Appetizer Bites for a gathering this Thanksgiving weekend. I was unsure of how they would turn out, so I did them a couple of days ahead of time. They turned out much better than I expected. Along with toasted walnuts, fresh rosemary, and black pepper, these little pear and Gorgonzola bites are a treat for the taste buds. In fact, we just couldn't stop eating them. So I had to make another batch.
I baked these in mini muffin tins. They are crisp and golden on the outside with a tender interior. Adding a few grinds of black pepper balanced the saltiness of the cheese. The only sweetness comes from the pears, which keep their flavour even after baking. They are delicious warm from the oven, but just as good cold. And a perfect fall-inspired appetizer. Serve them alongside fresh grapes and a selection of more cheeses.
If like me, you still have a lot of pears after making these, you can try making some delicious Pear Jelly.
Pear Gorgonzola Bites
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup Gorgonzola cheese crumbled
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- ¼ cup toasted walnuts chopped
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary chopped
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 ¼ cup 2% milk or non-dairy milk, such as rice or almond milk
- ¼ cup butter melted
- 1 large egg beaten
- juice of half a lemon
- 3 medium pears peeled cored and chopped
- Preheat oven to 350° Unless using non-stick, lightly coat a mini muffin tin with cooking spray
- In a large bowl, combine flour, cheese, baking powder, walnuts, rosemary, pepper, & salt
- In another bowl combine milk, butter, egg, lemon juice, and pears
- Add the milk/egg mixture to the dry ingredients, combining quickly with a few swift strokes so as not to overmix.
- Use a tablespoon or a melon baller to fill muffin cups with batter
- Bake in center of oven 15-20 minutes until golden
- Cool slightly on a rack and serve warm, or allow to cool completely and store in an airtight container in the fridge until serving
Just made these to test for a Thanksgiving appetizer and they are AWESOME!! I will probably do more Gorgonzola next time but that’s just my preference. Great recipe!
Hi Amanda. I'm so happy to hear this! These appetizers are always a hit. Thanks so much for commenting!
I was wondering if I wanted to make these gluten free would I just switch out the flour for 1:1 ratio for GF flour?
Hi Rebecca, thanks for this question. Yes, just switch out the flour for a 1:1 GF flour. Just one note, check if your flour blend contains xanthan gum. If it doesn't, you may want to add 1/2 teaspoon into the dry ingredients. If it does, you are good to go. Thanks again, I will add this to the recipe notes. Enjoy! These are delicious.
Just a minor issue - I cannot find any mention of the addition of the walnuts in the actual recipe. I did a word search to confirm I had not lost my mind. It's just not there.
Hi Brenda, Thanks so much for pointing out this error. I appreciate it and have corrected it. (Walnuts are combined with the dry ingredients). These are delicious, enjoy!
These are such perfect party pick-me-ups... I am saving these for the Finger-food-friday event we are going to have soon. I am thinking making assorted fruit flavours... Do you think apples and maybe pumpkin (its the season) would go well with the cheese pairing?
They look so very good, I love the idea of pairing pears (see what I did there) and blue cheese like this, such a great little nibble!
Haha, very good Brian! It really is a good pearing 🙂 and a delicious little nibble.
oh yum. these sound so delicious. I didn't know that about pears always being picked unripe. interesting!
Valentina, these really are so delicious!
Hi Valentina! It's helpful to know that when the pears are so hard when you buy them!
Oh yum..My favorite flavors - Pear and cheese.
Such a great combo and they look like a great size to snack on
Hi Danielle! These are so tasty and we actually snacked on them too much because they were meant for party appetizers, 🙂
These look delicious & thank you for the ripening tip - very helpful!
Agness of Run Agness Run
These bits are a perfect combination of ingredients, Colleen! Your pictures and recipe are making my mouth watery right now. 😉
Thanks Agness! These are mouth watering, for sure. ?
Hey Colleen, came to check what you have been up to. Always inspiring to visit your blog. This recipe is a must try, love pear and Gorgonzola and it is so seasonal now. Also love your blog format, very nice.
We are leaving for the winter soon. How did we miss getting together? Next summer for sure.
Thanks for those kind words, Dina! So nice to have you pop in. Summer really seemed to fly by, didn't it? Enjoy your winter; I'll keep up with you through your blog! Yes, next summer for sure.
Jenny | The Baking Skillet
Thanks for the pear tip! Didn't know that. These bites are so great for fall and winter entertaining.. Love the pear and cheese combo!
You're very welcome Jenny! I'll be making these again for sure 🙂
Wow good combo on the recipe 🙂
Thanks Suki, they are really delicious!
Hi Colleen, great reminder about the benefits of pears. I love blue cheese - sometimes going for the slightly milder Cambozola - and then there's Quebec's Bleu d'Elizabeth. Pressing print in a minute and hoping to make these in the weeks ahead. Thx for your creativity! Diane @kitchenblissca / FBC
Thanks Diane! Not everyone appreciates blue cheese, but I love it, too.
Pairing pears with a sharp cheese is one of my favourite flavour combinations! These will be ideal party food! Pinned!
Thanks Elaine, these are seriously good!
I love little foods like these! They look yummy!
Hi Bethany! Thank you, they are definitely delicious 🙂