Red Wine & Spice Poached Pears

In The Kitchen

Red Wine & Spice Poached Pears

Here's another recipe from our friend Grace, who created our Honeyed Feta & Roman Gnocchi dishes. Pro tip: serve this dessert after either of these savory meals for a night to remember.

A note from Grace:

Every year in the winter, my siblings and I beg our mum to make her famous red wine poached pears. While poaching doesn’t take long, the syrup can take an hour. Most of the work is passive so you can count on having time to prep dinner, read, or call a friend. Don’t rush the process. :) My mum favors bosc pears but most varieties will do – the key is passing over ripe pears and choosing slightly harder ones that will keep their form.



In a large pot, add all the ingredients for the red wine poached pear syrup and bring to a strong simmer. While the pot warms, peel the pears but keep the stems intact. This makes a world of difference when rotating them. Stir for a few minutes and then add the pears one at a time while dunking all sides. Pop the lid on and let simmer. Check on the pears at 10 minutes. The bottoms should be starting to take on a pink hue. Rotate them onto one side and replace the lid. Keep rotating every 7-8 minutes at this point until all sides are poached. If they still feel hard, continue poaching until they have softened. The perfect poached pear is easy to cut into with an ice cream laden spoon.

Remove the pears from the pot and allow to cool on a dish. Continue to let the poaching liquid simmer until it has reduced to a syrup. Usually this takes about an hour but keep an eye on it. Scoop vanilla ice cream into a bowl and place a pear on top. Drizzle with the spiced pear syrup and sprinkle with almonds and torn mint. The remaining syrup can be stored in a jar in the fridge and goes well with cheese, bread, yogurt, and coffee.



Red Wine & Spice Poached Pears

Serves 6

For the red wine syrup:

  • 2 cups of red wine
  • 1 cup of brown sugar
  • 1 cup of water
  • 2 sticks of cinnamon
  • 2-3 star anise seeds
  • a small handful of cardamom pods

For the poached pears:

  • 5-6 pears, bosc are best
  • a few scoops of vanilla ice cream
  • a handful of almonds, chopped
  • a sprig of fresh mint, torn
Pairs well with:

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