Saturday, April 2, 2011

Honey Poached Pears with Raspberry Sauce (Natirar)

Recently, my husband and I were privileged to attend a Super foods Cooking Class! It was held at the Viking Cooking School at Ninety Acres. ( We really learned a lot, enjoyed a delicious meal (with wine pairings!) and came home with some wonderful recipes to try, all bursting with healthful vitamins, nutrients and antioxidants.

I decided to try the Honey Poached Pears with Raspberry Sauce recipe first. It's presentation is lovely, and it was a perfect finish to a dinner with our Aussie friends.

Ingredients for the Honey Poached Pears:
8 medium pears (firm but slightly yielding to pressure)
6 cups aromatic white wine of drinkable quality (I used Riesling)
1 1/2  cups water
2 medium vanilla beans
2 1/2 cups honey  (I's a lot, right?)
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
6 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
16 black peppercorns, cracked
4 whole cloves
4 cinnamon sticks
2 (3 inch) pieces of fresh ginger, peeled and thinly sliced

Directions for Honey Poached Pears:
Cut the bottom 1/8th inch off of each pear to create a base.
Using a melon baller, core the pears by scooping out the bottom center of the pear. Continue scooping until all of the core and seeds are removed (about the middle of the pear.) Be careful not to scoop too far up or the pear will tear apart. At this point the pears should look whole on the outside but with a somewhat hollow core.
After all of the pears are cored, carefully peel them with a vegetable peeler, leaving the stems intact.  (Just pretend you see a stem on the pear below, OK?)

Pour the wine and water into a pot just large enough to hold all the pears. Split the vanilla beans in half lengthwise and scrape the seeds into the pot. Add the honey, sugar, balsamic vinegar, peppercorns, cloves, cinnamon sticks, and ginger to the pot. Bring the wine mixture to a boil. Then reduce the heat, and simmer for about 10-15 minutes.

Add the pears to the syrup, and cook at a very low simmer (poach) until they are just tender when pierced with a very sharp knife. Turn the pears as needed to evenly cook on all sides.
Allow the pears to cool in the syrup for increased flavor, but no longer than 3 hours or the pears will turn brown. Serve warm, cold, or at room temperature in a pool of raspberry sauce adorned with a sprig of mint for an attractive presentation (optional).

Ingredients for Raspberry Sauce:
2 cups thawed frozen raspberries
6 tablespoons honey
6 tablespoons orange liqueur
Mint sprigs, for garnish

Directions for Raspberry Sauce:
Combine the raspberries, honey and liqueur in a mini food processor, puree until smooth. Raspberry sauce can be made up to one week in advance, store tightly covered in refrigerator.

        Aren't they all just the cutest little delicious soldiers, all in a row??!!!

1 comment:

  1. Looks great. Thanks for sharing. : )