Locally grown sand pears are available during the late summer and fall in Northeast Florida.
- ½ cup dates
- ½ cup creamy almond butter
- 1 cup almond flour
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1/3 cup shredded coconut
- ¼ cup cranberries or golden raisins
- ¼ cup finely chopped almonds
- ¼ cup mini chocolate chips
- 1 cup dried pears, chopped
Soak the dates in warm water for 20 minutes. Drain the water and process the dates in a food processor until smooth. Add about 2 tablespoons of water to help make the dates creamier. Add almond flour and mix until a paste forms. Then add rolled oats, coconut, cranberries or raisins, finely chopped almonds and chocolate chips. Pulse until well mixed. Cover a baking dish with plastic wrap or parchment paper. Transfer the mixture into the dish and press until it is uniformly flattened. (The mixture can also be formed into small balls.) Place the baking dish in the refrigerator or freezer for about one hour. Remove from the refrigerator and chop into little squares. Decorate with the dehydrated pears. Store in containers or sealed plastic bags in the freezer to keep them firm and fresh.
If you don’t have a food dehydrator, you can use your oven to make dried fruit. Preheat the oven to 180°. Choose firm pears and wash them. Slice the pears using a mandoline. Use the number two setting so the pears are the right thickness. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper and place the pear slices on the paper. Bake in the oven for two hours. Turn the pears over and return to the oven. Continue baking and turning the pears every two hours. The whole process may take between six and eight hours, depending on how dry you want the pears.