Island Dish – Vegan Gluten Free Pear Crisp

by Laura Waters, Snowdon House, Gourmet & Gifts –

What an amazing summer. It has flown by like a whirlwind! I am so thankful for where I live and the amazing people that cross my path every day.

For the first time I registered with WWOOF – World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms and we have had three amazing people throughout the summer from Germany and Argentina. Two of them stayed for five weeks each. They loved mingling with the bed and breakfast people, meeting some of the campers, and working with the staff in the fields or in the kitchen. They helped with so many of the daily farm chores and are missed every day. One morning there were people, including the “woofer,” from five different countries! What an experience.

With Flavour Trails and Feast of Fields behind me, you might think I could take a break. Well, that’s not so easy when all the prime fruits and vegetables need processing. What a bounty we have access to! September saw the kitchen process 500 pounds of peaches and 500 pounds of pears. Then there was another crop of rhubarb ready, ripe apples, and lemon verbena and roses to pick, to name just a few of the projects we undertook. A big thank you goes to the woofers, staff and all the people that attended and made these fun summer events special.

With the bounty of the Okanagan pears I created the following vegan pear crisp for your enjoyment.

Preheat oven to 350°
4 cups pears (about 6)
20 grams fresh lemon verbena (optional but adds a lovely lemon flavour)
5 grams fresh ginger
lemon juice (to stop the pears from browning)
¼ cup pear juice
1 cup gluten free oats
¼ cup walnuts
2 tbsp unscented organic coconut oil
1 tbsp brown sugar

Spray an 8″ x 8″ glass baking dish with a non-stick spray. Core the pears and cut into one-inch pieces and place in baking dish. Add a dash of lemon juice to the pears to stop them from browning.

Place the lemon verbena, pear juice and fresh ginger in a blender and puree. This is green and rather scary looking but is delightful and totally natural. The colour changes while cooking. Place this mixture on top of the pears and stir together.

Assemble the topping. Place the coconut oil, oats, walnuts and brown sugar in a bowl and mix together. Spread evenly on top of the pears.

Place in oven and bake for one hour until brown.

Serve with homemade pear sorbet (recipe online at or vanilla ice cream.


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