Choose a baking dish just large enough to hold the four pears when cut in half and laid cut side down. Cover the bottom of the pan with a thin layer of brown sugar, not packed down. Sprinkle the brown sugar with a light dusting of ground cinnamon or ground cardamom. Cut pears in half lengthwise through the core. Using a melon baller, remove stem and core. Place cut side down on the brown sugar. Pour orange juice into the pan to a depth of 1/4 inch.
Cover bake at 350 degrees for 20 to 30 minutes depending on ripeness. Test by probing with a thin tined fork which should enter easily, but with some resistance. Serve warm in a bowl, cut side up with several tablespoons of juice spooned over. Pears will hold in the baking dish in a warm oven (200 degress) for up to one hour.
Note: Red pears show best at the breakfast table, but other fresh pears can be substituted. The amount of the spices can be altered to suit individual preferences.