- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- n a bowl, cream the butter, lemon zest and sugar. Blend in the flour with your fingers or a pastry blender until the mixture is crumbly.
- Place a 10-cm (4-inch) in diameter round cookie cutter on the baking sheet. Drop in 1/6 of the dough and press with your fingers. Remove the cutter and, if necessary, run a knife around the inside of the cutter to help the dough release. Repeat for all 6 shortbreads. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
- With the rack in the middle position, preheat the oven to 170 °C (325 °F). Bake for about 20 minutes. Remove from the oven before the cookies turn golden brown. Right out of the oven, sprinkle the cookies with a little sugar. Cool completely on a rack.
- Peel the pears, cut them in half and remove the core. In a saucepan, bring the water, sugar and ginger to a boil. Add the pears, cover and simmer gently for about 5 minutes. Cool the pears in the syrup. Drain. With a fine sieve, strain the syrup and remove the ginger. Pour the syrup back into the saucepan and reduce by half.
- To serve, place a scoop of ice cream in the centre of a shortbread cookie. Press a pear half into the ice cream at an angle and drizzle with ginger syrup.
Bosc and Bartlett pears bear well cooking and poaching, particularly the Bosc pear. Juicy and soft pears, such as Anjou, Conference, Packham, Passe-Crassane and Rocha, don’t hold up as well to high temperatures.