“Well,” said Pooh, “what I like best,” and then he had to stop and think. Because although Eating Honey was a very good thing to do, there was a moment just before you began to eat it which was better than when you were, but he didn’t know what it was called.”
~ A.A. Milne
Here at the farm it’s been unseasonably cold and rainy as we head towards summer. That’s okay. It’s the perfect weather for poached pears.
This is a very simple dish to make, but the results are fancy enough to grace your table at a dinner party or special luncheon. Or you can eat them anytime! They are super when served warm but are also delicious cold. They are sweetly spiced and they turn golden from the turmeric.
Make extra. You’ll be glad you did.
4 to 6 large firm ripe pears (Bartlett or Bosc are good varieties), 3 cups of water, 1/2 cup of honey, 1 large cinnamon stick, 6 to 12 cardamom pods crushed with the back of a knife or a mortar and pestle, a 2 inch piece of ginger cut into slices, 5 cloves, a 2 inch piece of turmeric cut into slices, pinch of salt
(If you’re sugar-free use natvia or stevia instead of the honey, or just cook the pears in unsweetened apple juice instead of the water and honey mixture. No fresh ginger or turmeric? Just use a 1/2 teaspoon of each as dried powder)
- Peel the pears and find a saucepan that fits them snugly.
- Add the water, honey and spices to the pan and bring the liquid to the boil.
- Reduce heat and add pears.
- Poach the pears in the liquid for 20 minutes or until soft all the way through when pierced by a fork or skewer.
- Remove pears from liquid to serve.
- If you want a thicker syrup return the pan to the stove and boil the liquid until it is reduced by half. This syrup can then be drizzled over the pears.
- Serve with a spoonful of poaching liquid or reduced syrup. Excellent with yogurt, ice-cream or creamed rice pudding.