Adapted from Real Simple, this recipe makes 4-8 servings (1-2 pear halves per person).
1-1/2 cups brown sugar
1 Tbsp grated ginger root
2 Tbsp unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
4 firm, slightly underripe Bartlett or Bosc pears
1/8 tsp ground cinnamon, for garnish
In a 4-quart slow cooker, stir together the sugar, ginger and butter.
Peel the pears with a vegetable peeler. Cut each pear in half lengthwise, and use a melon baller to remove the core. With a sharp paring knife, remove the stem and trim the bottom.
Gently toss the pears with the sugar mixture in the slow cooker, and layer them cut side down.
Set the cooker to HIGH, cover, and cook for 2 hours, until the pears are tender when pierced with a knife. (Open the cooker once during the cook time and gently spoon the sauce over the top pears.) Turn the cooker off, and with a slotted spoon, remove the pears to a bowl.
Pour the caramel sauce into a small sauce pan, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, to keep the sauce at a simmer. Shaking the pan fairly constantly, reduce the caramel sauce by one-third of its original volume (don't let the caramel get too dark, or it will have a burnt taste), 2-3 minutes.
Place 1-2 pear halves per person on individual plates. Spoon a bit of sauce over the pears, and sprinkle with cinnamon. Serve warm.