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Recipe for Drunken, Poached Pears
- 6-8 Bosc pears (brown, firm/hard ones)
- 4 1/4 cups red wine - 1 Liter
- 4 1/4 cups water - 1 Liter
- 2 cups sugar - 500 grams
- 2 cinnamon stick
- 2-3 cloves
For the topping:
- 2 cups granulated sugar for caramelization
- sweet wine reduction
We tested two methods for preparing these delicious pears. Some pears were prepared inside the oven chamber of the Fontana Gusto wood-fired oven and the other pears were prepared on the stove-top of the Pizza e Cucina. Both turned out great.
*After using the cast-iron pot to prepare the pears, I have come to the conclusion that from now on I will instead use a stainless steel pot or a Dutch oven with a glazed interior. We had the impression that the wine reduction had a slight iron aftertaste caused by the cast iron pot. This same taste was not present when prepared in a stainless steel pot.
FIRST METHOD is on the Pizza e Cucina stove top:
We cooked the first batch of pears on top of the Pizza e Cucina wood-fired oven stove-top. Cooking on this oven makes you feel as if you are preparing food on grandma's wood-fired stove.
Select and wash 8 firm Bosc pears.
Place the pot on top of the preheated stove-top of the Pizza e Cucina wood-fired oven. Pour the water into a pot of your choosing.
Next pour the wine into the pot and simply heat everything to a good simmer.
Once hot, pour the sugar into the pot, stir and allow it to dissolve.
Add two cinnamon sticks.
Place all the pears into the simmering wine.
Add 2-3 cloves into the pot and allow it to simmer covered for 15 minutes with the appropriate lid, until a paring knife easily pierces the pears.
SECOND METHOD is inside the Fontana Gusto:
We cooked the second batch of pears inside the cooking chamber of the Fontana Gusto wood-fired oven. With the help of the infrared thermometer we made sure the internal temperature of the oven reached 400°- 450°F.
Wash the pears and place them into a pot. Bring the wine to a boil and pour over the pears.
Mix the sugar and the water and bring to a simmer until completely dissolved. Add the boiling liquid to the wine and the pears. Make sure both liquids are boiling.
Add two sticks of cinnamon and two cloves to the pears.
You can place the pot on the stove top first to make sure the liquid is simmering before placing it in the preheated Fontana Gusto wood-fired oven.
Cover everything with the lid. Make sure to occasionally, but carefully turn the pears so they are covered by the wine. Close the oven door and cook for 45 minutes or until a paring knife easily pierces the pears.
From here on the steps will be the same for both methods:
When a paring knife easily pierces the pears, it is time to take them out of the pot with a slotted spoon, being careful to keep each intact.
Make sure to reserve all the liquid in order to make the reduction.
Place all the pears in a bowl.
Preparing the Reduction:
Bring the wine in the pot to a boil and allow it to reduce until it becomes a thick sauce. You will know it is ready when the reduction drips off slowly from the wooden spoon. Set the reduction aside for later.
Preparing the caramelized sugar:
Place the sugar into a saucepan over moderate heat. Make sure to watch it closely while it heats up. You will notice that the outside edge of the sugar will liquefy to a clear color and fairly quickly to a golden color. With the help of a wooden spoon slowly move the sugar that begins to brown around the edges toward the center of the saucepan.
At times the sugar tends to melt unevenly, but don't worry. Lower the heat or move it away from the heat source and continue to stir. Refrain from over stirring as you might create crystallized lumps. Perfect caramelized sugar should reach a dark amber color just past the smoking point. Take it immediately off the stove or you risk burning it.
Place a pear on a plate.
With the help of a wooden spoon drizzle some of the reduction over the pear.
You can also drizzle the sauce on the plate before placing the pear on it.
With a wooden spoon drizzle the caramelized sugar over the pear with a back and forth motion.
What are your favorite ways to prepare and eat pears?
Do you have a favorite holiday dessert?
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