The brandy imparts a great flavor to this simple dessert, but you can substitute 1/4 cup apple juice, and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract if you prefer. Be sure to use very ripe pears so you don't end up with crunchy or overly firm fruit in the cobbler.
3 tablespoons butter, melted and divided
6 very ripe Bartlett, Anjou, or Seckel pears, peeled, cored, and halved lengthwise (about 2 1/4 pounds)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar, divided
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup 2% reduced-fat milk
1/4 cup brandy
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 400°.
Drizzle the bottom of a 13 x 9-inch baking dish with 1 1/2 tablespoons butter. Arrange pear halves in 3 rows, cut sides down, over the butter. Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup, and level with a knife. Combine flour, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl. Add 1 1/2 tablespoons butter, milk, and brandy, and stir until well-blended. Spoon the batter around the pear halves. Combine 1/2 cup granulated sugar, brown sugar, and lemon rind; sprinkle over pear halves. Bake at 400° for 30 minutes or until bubbly.