1.Preheat the oven to moderate (180°C / 160°C fan-forced). Grease four shallow ovenproof dishes (1 1/4cup / 300ml capacity). Place dishes on an oven tray.
2.Divide pear slices among dishes.
3.Combine flour, sugar, butter and milk in a small bowl; mix well. Spread the mixture evenly over pear slices in dishes. Sprinkle batter with pecans.
4.To make caramel sauce, combine all the ingredients in a medium heatproof jug; stir until sugar is dissolved and butter melted.
5.Pour caramel sauce slowly over the back of a spoon over mixture in dishes. Bake in a moderate oven for about 25 minutes or until firm.
6.Dust lightly with sifted icing sugar, serve immediately with cream or ice-cream, if desired.