I love the rich color of pears poached in red wine.
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You will need:
For the Poached Pears:
1 vanilla pod
1 bottle red wine
1⁄3 cup sugar
2 cinnamon sticks
10 whole peppercorns
8 whole cloves
4 whole star anise
fresh thyme sprigs
1 orange, just the peel
4 ripe Bosc pears, peeled with stems intact
For the Cardamom Crème Fraîche:
1⁄2 cup crème fraîche
1⁄2 teaspoon ground cardamom
2 teaspoons confectioners’ sugar
1⁄2 teaspoon good vanilla extract
- Halve the vanilla pod lengthways, scrape out black seeds, and put them and the pod in a large saucepan with wine, sugar, cinnamon, peppercorns, cloves, anise, thyme, and orange peel.
- Delicately slice off the bottom of each pear so they can stand upright when ready to serve.
- Lower them on their sides into liquid.
- Bring to a gentle boil, then reduce heat and simmer gently, partially covered, for 1–11⁄2 hours, or until pears are tender and the liquid has reduced.
- Baste pears with the spiced wine a few times during cooking, turning the pears over at least once so that both sides have a turn being fully submerged in the liquid.
- Carefully remove pears and set aside.
- Boil liquid for 8–10 minutes or until thick and syrupy.
- In a separate bowl, add spices to crème fraîche and whisk until it just starts to thicken.
- erve pears with syrup drizzled over, thyme sprig, and cardamom crème fraîche.
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