- 1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) unsalted butter, divided
- 2 firm-ripe pears – peeled, cored and sliced
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom, divided
- 1 cup pomegranate juice
- 1/2 cup mascovado or brown sugar, or to taste
- 1/4 cup pomegranate arils
- 4 eggs
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Pinch of salt
- 8 (1-inch) slices day-old brioche, challah or French bread
In a large skillet, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium heat. Add pears and sauté until golden and soft, 5 to 7 minutes. Sprinkle with 1/8 teaspoon cardamom and sauté 1 minute longer. Remove from the pan and keep warm. In the same pan, melt 1 tablespoon butter and add pomegranate juice and sugar. Simmer until liquid is thickened and syrupy, 5 to 8 minutes. Stir in pomegranate arils and remove from the heat.
In a bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, vanilla, remaining 1/8 teaspoon cardamom and salt; pour into a large, shallow pan. Soak bread in a single layer in the egg mixture, turning once. Let stand so the liquid is absorbed, about 5 minutes per side.
Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 4 bread slices and cook until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes per side; transfer to a warm platter. Repeat with remaining butter and bread. Top with sautéed pears and drizzle with pomegranate syrup.