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Oven Poached Pears in Vanilla Syrup

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I love pears.

Pears with strong cheeses, pears with bitter greens, sweet pears have an amazing ability to marry well with a broad range of flavours.

It’s not only their delicious sweetness or their infinite versatility, it’s also their sensuous curves, their sexy lines that I love. They appeal to my artistic eye. But not all pears are created equal. You can’t go past Doyenne de Comice for eating fresh, but it’s the brown skinned Beurre Bosc variety I especially love to cook. Unlike other local varieties they maintain their sexy curves and firm structure even when slow cooked to a buttery texture. They look a million dollars on a plate, and taste wonderful.

Sweet poached pears match well with almonds, chocolate, vanilla and sweet spices such as cinnamon.

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12 pears
1 cup sugar
1 cup white wine
2 cups water
3 strips of orange peel
3 strips lemon peel
1 cinnamon stick
1 vanilla bean split lengthwise
Juice of a lemon

To keep the pears from oxidizing while you make the syrup, fill a large bowl with cold water and add the lemon juice. Add the pears to the bowl as you peel them
Put the remainder of the ingredients into a large pot and as you peel the pears, add the skins to the pot.
Bring the pot to the boil stirring constantly until the sugar has dissolved. Reduce the heat to a low simmer, then cover the pot and simmer for 30 minutes.
Heat the oven to 160C
Strain the syrup, discarding the pear skins. Return the vanilla, cinnamon and citrus zests to the syrup.
Drain the pears and put them into a lidded casserole dish. Pour the hot syrup over the pears. The pears should be totally submerged. Cover the pears with a piece of baking paper that you’ve cut to size, put the lid on the dish then poach the pears in the oven until soft, 60 – 90 minutes.
Remove the pears from the poaching liquid then bring the syrup to the boil and reduce it until thick.
Cool the pears in the syrup.

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About ladyredspecs

I live in sunny Brisbane, Australia. My love of good food drives me as a cook, a reader, a traveller, an artist and but mostly as an eater. I cooked professionally for many years but have no formal training. Simply guided by a love of eating good food, respect for ingredients and an abhorrence of artificial additives, I cook instinctively applying the technical know how acquired by experience. I hope you enjoy what I share Sandra AKA ladyredspecs

25 comments on “Oven Poached Pears in Vanilla Syrup

  1. Sally
    May 26, 2014

    I share your love of pears and enjoy them poached. Have never poached in the oven though. Must try.

    Like

  2. littledogslaughed
    May 24, 2014

    This looks marvelous-and the pictures are fantastic!

    Like

  3. tinywhitecottage
    May 22, 2014

    Imagine having to follow your blog again! What? I came to see what you have been cooking lately and saw I wasn’t even following. Lovely pears. So delicious and can not get enough of them. They photographed so beautifully Sandra. I have never poached pears before. Your syrup sounds perfect. Saving your recipe to do!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      May 22, 2014

      Thanks Seana. WP is playing all kinds of similar games with me too, though I wonder if the sensitivity of the touch screen is to blame. A mere brush of the follow button and you’re gone! You MUST try poaching pears, they are seriously good! I’d love to hear when you do make them

      Like

      • tinywhitecottage
        May 22, 2014

        You right. One day I noticed I was actually following myself! Don’t know how that happened! I’ll follow up after poaching pears. πŸ™‚

        Like

  4. StefanGourmet
    May 22, 2014

    Great post! This recipe is quite similar to an Italian classic called “pere ubriache” (drunken pears, because of the wine). I really like the idea to use the peels to make a syrup!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      May 22, 2014

      Good to hear from you Stefan. I keep seasonal fruit poaching stocks in the freezer. With stone fruits I use the pits and skins too in a similar style, then decant off any excess at the end of the cooking as the basis of the next batch. The flavour just gets more and more intense.

      Like

  5. Mr Fitz
    May 22, 2014

    Nice!

    Like

  6. chef mimi
    May 21, 2014

    Such a lovely dessert!

    Like

  7. Leah
    May 21, 2014

    wow.. your pears look luscious and worthy of being a piece of art in their own right… add the flavour and smell and its a dessert to appeal to all of the senses… absolutely divine! xxx

    Like

  8. Glenda
    May 21, 2014

    Hi Sandra. It all looks lovely – love the photos but I am wondering about your fructose issue. Aren’t pears on the no go list?

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      May 21, 2014

      Quite right, they are Glenda, but I can manage one half, if it’s cooked, every second day, without consequence. Any more is too much for me. The rest of the family loves cooked fruit so it is always eaten with gusto.
      I put FODMAP in the category if the recipe is made within the recommended guidelines. What you can and cannot tolerate takes quite a bit of time to sort out. It can be quite difficult determining what is causing reactions when they happen, especially when you believe you’ve been good. An initial, total exclusion diet with cautious reintroduction is the only way to go.

      Like

      • Glenda
        May 21, 2014

        Geez it must be hard.

        Like

  9. bakeritalia
    May 20, 2014

    A beautifully written post. The flavours used remind me of a pear and vanilla crostata I found in an old Donna Hay magazine that I make often. Enjoy!

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      May 20, 2014

      Thanks, vanilla really enhances any poached fruit, it’s not a new idea but a good one

      Like

  10. My Kitchen Witch
    May 20, 2014

    Pears, citrus, vanilla and cinnamon, what a great flavour combination. I’ve done something similar with red wine and vanilla – very robust, but this looks so delicate and a lot more subtle. I bet it was a real treat, particularly with that mille feuilles pastry. πŸ˜‰

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      May 20, 2014

      Thanks Deb, pears cooked this way are beautiful. That pastry thingo was my attempt at your necci recipe. Sadly they were very rubbery and even filled with ricotta and chocolate, after a couple of mouthfuls, were condemned. I will try them again!

      Like

      • My Kitchen Witch
        May 20, 2014

        I hope you try the necci again. I don’t remember them being rubbery – more grainy from the chestnut flour. Now you’ve got me wanting to make them again – recreating the experiment, as it were, to see if I get the same results! πŸ˜„ They are difficult to work with, however, and tend to tear if not flipped properly. Whatever the case, they look good in. the photo!

        Like

  11. marymtf
    May 20, 2014

    Delicious. Lovely photos, too. Can I just ask about the sugar. Pears are quite naturally sweet. Wouldn’t adding a cup of sugar be gilding the lilly a bit?

    Like

    • ladyredspecs
      May 20, 2014

      It’s a matter of personal taste Mary. With the volume of liquid, one cup makes quite a light syrup. I like it to be an integral part of the fruit dish? If I don’t sweeten the poaching syrup, it seems to leach the flavour out of the fruit, and it’s a very ordinary syrup.

      Like

  12. Francesca
    May 20, 2014

    Perfect pears. And what is that other dainty morsel on the plate??

    Like

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This entry was posted on May 20, 2014 by in Breakfast and Brunch, Desserts, Food, Fruit Desserts, Gluten Free, Light dessert and tagged , , , .
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