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1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. For syrup, in a small saucepan combine 1/4 cup of the granulated sugar, 1/2 cup of the cold water, the brown sugar, honey, brandy, lemon juice, butter, vanilla bean, stick cinnamon, and nutmeg. Cook over high heat until boiling, whisking to dissolve sugars. Remove from heat; cool slightly. Carefully remove stick cinnamon and vanilla bean; scrape bean and return seeds to syrup. Discard cinnamon stick and vanilla bean.*
2. Trim bottoms from pears; stand upright in a 9x9x2-inch baking pan. Pour syrup over pears. Roast about 1 hour or until pears are tender when pierced with knife, basting with syrup every 20 minutes. Cool to room temperature. Working from the bottom of each pear, use a melon baller to remove core.
3. For caramel sauce, in a small saucepan combine the remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar and the remaining 1/4 cup cold water. Cook over high heat until boiling; reduce heat to medium. Cook for 10 to 11 minutes more or until golden brown. Remove from heat; slowly whisk in cream until smooth.
4. To serve, pour 2 tablespoons of the caramel sauce on each of two dessert plates. Arrange pears on top of sauce. Drizzle remaining sauce over pears. If desired, garnish with pomegranate seeds or fresh fruit and mint sprigs.