I love pears and yet finding that perfect moment to eat them at the peak of pear perfection frequently eludes me. Poaching them gently in a fragrantly spiced syrup of red wine and orange juice gives me the opportunity to enjoy this delightful fruit and I am never disappointed.
At this time of year the small Rocha pears are easy to find and though a little fiddly to peel are gorgeous to behold when sliced in half and the pearly white flesh is outlined by the stain of the red wine syrup. And of course the blend of the syrup and the pear is heavenly! Feel free to experiment with any variety of firm, yet ripe pear for this recipe. You will know when they are cooked and tender when a cocktail stick slides easily into the center of the fruit.
Preparation: 30 minutes
25dl red wine
1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
2 strips orange zest
½ cup coconut sugar
1 cup water
1 star anise
1 stick cinnamon
What to do
1. Place everything except the pears in a pan and bring to a gentle simmer.
2. Stir occasionally until the sugar has dissolved.
3. Meanwhile, peel the pears, keeping the stalk intact.
4. Gently lower the pears into the red wine syrup.
5. Simmer gently for 10-12 minutes or until the pears are tender. Turn the pears now and again to immerse them in the red wine syrup.
6. Remove the pears from the pan and continue to simmer the syrup until it has reduced by about half and the flavour is divine.
7. To serve, place the pears in individual bowls and pour over about 4 tablespoons of the red wine syrup.
Whole Food Plant Based Tip: Pears contain heart-healthy soluble fiber which can reduce the absorption of LDL or “bad” cholesterol into the bloodstream. Pears are also easy to digest so are excellent to eat if you have food sensitivities.