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Monday, November 19, 2007

Poached Pears


Over late Summer we had a ton of pears in our backyard. We have an Asian pear tree which looks sort of like Shinseiki and a Northwest variety that looks a bit like Seckel. We inherited the trees when we bought the house some years ago when the pear trees were just little babies and weren't bearing much fruit... so, am not sure what the varieties are exactly.

Both the pear trees are short and skinny and bear a ton of fruit within a short span of 6-8 weeks, every other year. Many of the fruits are usually low-hanging that my toddler could reach and pick and enjoy fresh from the tree.

I made a few batches of pear sauce out of the juicy Asian pears and canned them. Pear sauce recipe I used is very much the generic Applesauce recipe, nothing special. About a couple of dozen pears were just sliced and canned in a light syrup. Many were enjoyed as-is, whole, fresh off the tree. Quite a few of them became an integral part of our summer salads.

poached pearspoached pears
poached pearspoached pears

However, some of the Seckel-style pears were destined to be served poached in a delicious sauce, in a bed of summer berry confetti :)

The rosy green skin was quite a hit with my toddler. They were mildly sweet, not cloying. And when picked just right, they had the crisp crunch that I love. I am not fond of ripe, soft and mushy pears.


for the sauce:
1 can (11½ fl oz) Kern's Papaya nectar
2/3 cup sugar
¼ cup sweet red wine
1 cup apple juice
a 2" piece of cinnamon bark whole (or 1 tsp cinnamon powder)
6-8 allspice berries
2 tsp cornstarch (as needed)
½ cup water

3-4 small to medium, firm pears, peeled.
fruit cofetti:
blue berries, raspberries or any of your favorite summer berries, maybe some diced apple all tossed together with about a tablespoon of sugar if preferred

or any other Kern's nectar that you like - I just had papaya nectar handy; or even any other preferred 100% fruit juice
I had some Syrah and Tawny Port handy, but any table wine with medium-to-heavy body and on the sweet side can be used

  1. Bring a pot of water to a boil and allow the pears to cook in it till a fork pierces the flesh with some gentle pressure - don't cook till mushy unless you like it that way :)
  2. Sauce: combine all the sauce ingredients except the red wine and cornstarch, bring to a boil, then lower the heat, add the par-cooked pears so they are at least 2/3rds immersed in the syrup, add the red wine and simmer on low till thick and syrupy and the pears are fork-tender; dissolve cornstarch in a bit of water and stir it in gently to thicken the sauce to desired consistency as needed
  3. Serve warm or cold: place the fruit confetti in the bowl, place the poached pears and drizzle some extra sauce, or serve extra sauce on the side


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  • At 10:50 PM, Blogger KayKat said…

    Yum! One of my all-time fave desserts :)

    Love that picture!

  • At 1:47 AM, Blogger Nags said…

    poaching has always intrigued me. have to try it out once.

  • At 4:57 AM, Blogger Siri said…

    The poached pears look amazingly beautiful dear. Lucky ones!


  • At 8:22 AM, Blogger TBC said…

    Sounds wonderful. Lovely pics too:-)

  • At 4:26 AM, Blogger SUGARCRAFT INDIA said…

    wow..what a lovely dessert with pears......!! great pics!!


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