DIVINE Pear and Walnut Brownies. Sumptuously chocolatey. Rich with seasonal fruit and earthy, crunchy walnuts. Gluten free, optional dairy free, made with less refined sugars and real dark chocolate.
DON’T LOSE THIS RECIPE. PIN Pear and Walnut Brownies FOR LATER…
Pear and Walnut Brownies – perfect Autumn brownies
If you have a passion for making brownies, these Pear and Walnut Brownies are a perfect Autumn addition to the collection. Simple to make and dappled with succulent, fresh fruit and crunchy, earthy walnuts, they welcome the abundance of the harvest and hint of the cooler, winter days to come.
I am lucky enough to live in Kent, the ‘Garden of England’… The south-eastern most corner of the UK. It’s famed for fruit growing, cabbage fields and cobnuts… hops and vineyards… oysters and Dover Sole… and, its more recent addition of ‘Thanet Earth’ : A complex of temperature and light controlled glass houses which enable the production of fresh fruit and veg all year round.
Of course, the juicy fruit in these pear and walnut brownies was not grown under glass. In fact, it wasn’t even from the supermarket… One of the delights of living in a place where fruit trees are the norm, is that come harvest, there’s always plenty of free fruit on offer.
Local community fruit
Pears and walnuts are two of my favourite local ingredients (although Kentish walnuts appear slightly later in the year). And when harvest beckons, boxes piled with ripe picked pears and windfalls start appearing outside the gates of houses. I love that abundance is shared with the community… often with hand-scribbled envelopes that read ‘help yourself’. It seems every third house has a pear tree in the garden…. or an apple, a plum, a cobnut, or a damson… The harvest share is a generous delight.
Sadly, with the increase of hotter, drier summers, the harvests are visibly beginning to suffer. However, I am usually still lucky enough to snaffle a bag or two from friends… Just enough to make these Autumn-inspired pear and walnut brownies as well as some of the other recipes I’ve shared later in the post.
The problem with most gluten free brownies
Brownies often seem to be maligned in the gluten free community. I get it. Really! When you are Coeliac and the only dessert offering (other than ice cream) on the menu is ‘gluten free brownie’, it can get a little tedious… Especially when that’s in pretty much every restaurant. Grateful as we are for the effort made, there needs to be a little more creativity out there.
The other problem for me however, is that brownies can often be over-sweet. They may be a popular chocolate and sugar fix, but all too often they are heavily weighted towards refined white sugar (lots of it) and loaded with additional sweets and biscuits. Pretty and ‘instagramable’ maybe, but scarily sugar-filled.
Much as these drool-worthy images are tempting, after an initial ‘Oooohh’ I think ‘god, that’s sickly…’ and move on.
Pear and Walnut Brownies – carefully chosen ingredients that make these and our other gluten free brownies better
So why choose Gluten Free Alchemist brownie recipes? Well… in addition to these Pear and Walnut Brownies, most of our gluten free brownies use ingredients that are a little less ‘bad’ and give a more quality brownie-eating experience. From Beetroot Brownies, Banana Brownies and even Chocolate-Cherry-Pecan Brownies, we often add a delicious fruity twist and mostly use unrefined or less refined sugars. I like to think this gives them a bit of an ‘edge’… Deep and flavourful rather than cloyingly sweet.
Even our incredibly popular Coffee Brownies, Toblerone Brownies, Peanut Butter Brownies and Chocolate-Orange Brownies use brown sugars for a yummier and more ‘caramel’ sugar hit… And some recipes also use additional, healthier ground almonds and other nuts as well.
Indeed, with these pear brownies, the soft moist texture and fruitiness of the fresh pear helps to cut through the sugar… As does the craggy, almost bitter, earthiness of the walnut. And with the deep and delicate sweetness from the combination of brown and golden caster sugars, this Autumn recipe for brownies is incredible.
The texture of Pear and Walnut Brownies
Unlike some blogs, the base ingredients for brownies on Gluten Free Alchemist vary from one recipe to the next. There is no single ‘formula’. Why? Because brownies should be celebrated with any number of textures.
From soft and fluffy, to drier and slightly crumbly, to dense and more gooey… they are all divine. Sometimes it’s a simple matter of cooking for longer or less, but the ingredients can make a huge difference to the end result.
These particular pear and walnut brownies err on the side of gooey, but not so much so, that they clag in your teeth.
Whatever the texture however, brownies can often be tricky to cut. While they should always be cooled completely in the tin, before turning out, it also helps to place them in the fridge for an hour to firm up. This allows for a more even, clean cut… after which you can bring them back to room temperature for the best texture and flavour experience.
What are your favourite Autumn Brownies?
So there you have it… My deliciously seasonal Pear and Walnut Brownies.
What are your favourite Autumn brownies? Or what fruity brownies do you think I should try making next? Let me know in the comments section below and I’ll see what I can do.
And if you aren’t yet subscribed to receive e-mails, then simply fill in the subscription box for all the latest recipes straight to your in-box.
And for plenty more gluten free inspiration, head over to the recipe index and be inspired.
More Fresh Pear Inspiration on Gluten Free Alchemist
- Pear & Chocolate Cake
- Pear Upside Down Cake with Mocha Sponge
- Winter Ginger & Pear Trifle
- Brown-Sugared Pear & Ginger Preserve
- Heavenly Chocolate Torte with Walnut & Pear
- Sweet Autumn Dessert Yorkshire Pudding with Vanilla Sautéed Pear & Walnuts
- Raw Green Smoothie
- White Chocolate, Lavender & Blackberry Panna Cotta with Blackberry-Poached Pears
Pear and Walnut Brownies
- 8 inch/20 cm square baking tin
- baking paper
- sharp knife
- glass heat-proof bowl
- microwave or hob and saucepan
- wooden/silicone spoon
- Kitchen scales
- measuring spoons
- Mixing bowls
- whisk (optional)
- mixing spoon/spatula
- 300 g good quality dark chocolate (DF if required) cubed
- 150 g unsalted butter (or DF alternative)
- 100 g plain GF flour blend (I used GFA Blend A – see NOTES)
- 50 g ground almonds almond meal
- ½ tsp fine sea salt
- 1 tsp GF baking powder
- 3 large eggs room temperature – UK large (Canadian ‘Extra Large’; Australian ‘Jumbo’; and US ‘Extra or Very Large’)
- 60 ml milk Dairy free of needed
- 70 g golden caster sugar
- 70 g soft light brown sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 140 g fresh pear cubes – no peel or pips (approx 1 medium-large pear)
- 65 g walnuts rough chopped
- Pre-heat the oven to 180 C/350 F/Gas 4 and base-line a non-stick 8 inch/20cm square baking tin with baking paper.
- In a medium-sized glass heatproof bowl, melt the chocolate and butter together, either in a microwave (medium setting, 30 second bursts, stirring between each until smooth) or over a simmering pan of water. Set aside.
- Weigh and mix together the flour, almonds, salt and baking powder until well blended and all lumps are broken down (TIP : weigh into an airtight container and shake vigorously). Set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat together the eggs, milk, sugars and vanilla extract, to blend completely.
- Add the dry ingredients and chocolate mixture to the bowl and fold through thoroughly until well blended and even in colour.
- Add and fold through the cubed pear and chopped nuts.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared baking tin and smooth the top.
- Bake for 35 to 45 minutes until firm, but so that a skewer inserted into the centre comes out with a few crumbs attached.
- Remove from the oven and cool completely in the tin.
- When cold, chill in the fridge for an hour (to make it easier to cut) before slicing into squares.
- Decorate (or not) as you wish.
- Store at room temperature and eat within 2 days (or in the fridge it will last longer, but bring to room temperature before eating for best squidginess).
© 2019-2021 Kate Dowse All Rights Reserved – Do not copy or re-publish this recipe or any part of this recipe on any other blog, on social media or in a publication without the express permission of Gluten Free Alchemist
Pear and Walnut Brownies shared with :
- Cook Blog Share with Cooking with My Kids
- Full Plate Thursday #500 with Miz Helen’s Country Cottage
- Creative Muster #400 with Fluster Buster
- What’s For Dinner #269 with The Lazy Gastronome
- Create, Bake, Grow and Gather #438 with Shabby Art Boutique