- Preparation time: 10 minutes
- Cooking time: 1 hour
- Makes 4 servings.
- 4 medium-size firm pears (e.g., Anjou, Bartlett, Boscop - see photos below)
- The pears should be just ripe, and still firm.
- Canned pears are typically too soft.
- 1 bottle robust red wine (e.g., Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot)
- ½ cup (100 grams) sugar
- 1 vanilla bean, cut in half lengthwise
- 1 whole cinnamon stick
- peel (not zest) from 1 orange
- peel (not zest) from 1 lemon
- 2 whole cloves
- 1 star anise
- 1 whole bay leaf
Left to right: Anjou, Bartlett ( = Williams), Boscop
EQUIPMENT & SUPPLIES
- Medium size sauce pan
- Slotted spoon
- Optional: melon baller
- Medium size bowl
- Fine-mesh sieve
- Wooden spoon
PREPARATION / DIRECTIONS
- Peel the pears - do not cut the pears - and place in medium size saucepan
- Add the rest of the ingredients
- If the pears are not completely covered, add some water until they are just covered
- Put saucepan over high heat and bring to a boil
- Reduce to a simmer, and over medium-low heat, cook for 15 minutes while occasionally stirring very gently
- Remove pan from heat and let the pears cool in the liquid
- With slotted spoon, move pears to a plate
- The pears can be left whole, or cut in half lengthwise and cores removed with a melon-baller (and, if you want, the stem, using a paring knife)
- Pour the poaching liquid through a sieve that is set over a bowl
- Discard the solids, and return the liquid to the saucepan
- Place over medium-high heat, and cook for about 45 minutes, until the liquid has been reduced to a syrup that coats the back of a wooden spoon
- Let cool
- Store pears in an airtight container until ready to serve
SERVING & GARNISH SUGGESTIONS
- When ready to serve, arrange pears on a platter or on individual plates, and drizzle poaching liquid over them.
- If you cut the pears in half lengthwise, you can (carefully) slice them lengthwise (not all the way through, but starting at least ½ -1 inch away from the stem end), and (carefully) spread them like a fan.
©2000 M. Stewart