Here’s an elegant dessert that will show off your homegrown harvest. Poached pears make for a light and refreshing dessert—you might want to make enough for seconds!Print
Spiced Poached Pears
Here’s an elegant dessert that will show off your homegrown harvest. Poached pears make for a light and refreshing dessert—you might want to make enough for seconds!
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 20 minutes
- Total Time: 35 minutes
- Yield: Serves 4 to 6 1x
- Category: Desserts
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- Water to cover pears
- 4 to 6 firm pears with stems; Bosc, Bartlett, Anjou, and Comice are good choices
- 1 cup white wine (champagne is fine, too)
- 5 cups water
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cinnamon stick
- Peel of 1 orange, cut into pieces
- 2 whole cloves
- Mint leaves for garnish
- In a large bowl, combine lemon juice and enough water to cover pears.
- Core the pears from the bottom using a corer or melon baller. Peel the pears and keep the stems intact.
- Trim the bottom of each pear so it can stand upright when served.
- Put the pears in the water and lemon juice mixture to keep them from browning while you prepare the poaching liquid.
- In a large pan that can hold all the pears either upright or on their sides, add the wine, water, and sugar, and bring just to a boil.
- Add the salt, vanilla extract, cinnamon stick, orange peel, and cloves.
- Arrange the pears in the poaching liquid; add more water as needed to just cover them.
- Cover the pan with a small lid that will hold the pears fully in the poaching liquid.
- Reduce the heat to low and simmer the pears, turning them occasionally, for 15 to 20 minutes or until the pears are tender (Use a thin-bladed knife to check doneness. The blade should slide in easily.). Do not poach for too long—pears can soften quickly into mush.
- Using a slotted spoon, carefully transfer the pears to serving dishes.
- Cover pears with plastic wrap and refrigerate until you are ready to serve them.
- Strain the cinnamon stick, orange peel, and cloves from the poaching liquid; reserve the orange peel. Increase heat to medium-high and boil the liquid for about 30 minutes—until the liquid is reduced to 3/4 to 1 cup and slightly syrupy (watch carefully so it does not burn). Remove from heat and refrigerate sauce until you’re ready to serve.
- To serve, pour approximately 1/4 cup syrup over each chilled pear. Garnish with the orange peels (they are now candied and can be eaten) and a sprig of mint leaves.
Have you tried this recipe? It’s so easy and delicious—please tell us how it turned out for you.