“These fragrant pears are a dramatic way to finish off a Middle Eastern feast. They’re delicious, aromatic and an unusual twist on basic poached pears.” —Trisha Kruse, Eagle, Idaho
- 2 medium firm pears
- 1 vanilla bean
- 2-1/4 cups water
- 1/2 cup white grape juice
- 2 dried apricots, chopped
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 lemon peel strip
- 1 whole clove
- 2 tablespoons chopped almonds, toasted
- Core pears from the bottom, leaving stems intact. Peel pears; cut 1/4 in. from the bottom of each to level if necessary. Split vanilla bean and scrape seeds; set aside.
- In a small saucepan, combine the water, grape juice, apricots, sugar, honey, lemon strip, clove, vanilla bean and seeds. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; place pears on their sides in saucepan and poach, uncovered, for 18-22 minutes or until pears are almost tender, basting occasionally with poaching liquid.
- Remove pears and apricots with a slotted spoon; cool slightly. Cover and refrigerate. Bring poaching liquid to a boil; cook until liquid is reduced to 1/4 cup. Discard the vanilla bean, lemon strip and clove. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
- Place pears on dessert plates. Drizzle with poaching liquid. Sprinkle with apricots and almonds. Yield: 2 servings.
Originally published as Persian Poached Pears in Healthy Cooking February/March 2011, p56
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