1) My friend Amanda suggested that I might want to carmelize the pears before blending them into the coconut milk. ("Carmelize?" "Low & slow, in some fat." "I can do that.")
2) Thanks be to google, I found that Bartlett pears were likely to have a less grainy texture than the Anjou I tried the first time. I also kept it in a paper bag for a day or two to make sure it was thoroughly ripe - the steak knife I used to peel & chop slid through it like butter.
I also added one of my own ideas - a little fresh ginger. Nom! So without further ado:
Pear Gingerbread Pudding, 2.0
* 1/2 can coconut milk
* 2 tbsp butter (grassfed)
* 1 pear (Bartlett, or other creamy pear), chopped and peeled
* 1/2 tsp ginger/cinnamon/clove mix (I have a bottle of these spices mixed 4:4:1 ratio)
* 1/2 tbsp molasses
* ~1/8 tsp salt
* a knob of fresh ginger, peeled, about 1.5 inches long
1) Melt butter in small saucepan, over low-medium heat. Add pears, salt, and dry spices and simmer about 5-10 minutes. (*) Stir frequently.
2) Pour simmered pears & coconut milk into blender, and purée (about 45 seconds).
3) Return to the pot, add the molasses and simmer another 25 minutes. At some point in the 25 minutes, add the knob of ginger (pictured below). (I added it about 15 minutes in because I forgot earlier.) :). Stir every few minutes.
4) Remove knob of ginger, pour into 2 custard cups (**) and refrigerate. Minimum of an hour & a half. I barely manage to hold out that long. :)
YES YES YES 10/10 and spouse agrees!
Texture - perfectly creamy! Not quite as thick as I was aiming for but totally custard like and delicious! Great on its own, and also I think would go beautifully over a relatively simple cake if you are eating that kind of thing.
Flavor - still a huge win!
Normal person taste buds: Spouse made a very VERY happy face. Said he liked it better than pumpkin pie (which he hasn't been able to eat in 15+ years.). Said with a touch of whipped cream and sprinkling of nutmeg would make the perfect seasonal holiday dessert to end a dinner party.
(*) at this stage, this would make a nice side dish to a savory meal or pancake topping.
(**) I've taken to putting the custard cups into the freezer ahead of time so that the pudding will set up faster, because I have seriously grabby hands about my pudding.