Friday, January 3, 2014

Sweet Ending

Poached Pear in Wine Sauce
I love simple dessert's that don't require fussing and bother for hours on end. Especially after a rather heavy meal. I repeated my Standing Rib Roast for our Christmas main course and the side dishes I made were the usual suspects for beef. So I thought a dessert re-do which happens to be a favorite of ours would be just perfect. Plus, it looks Christmasy. All reddish-plum colored and pretty. 

Poached Pears in Wine Sauce

2 cups or so dry red wine
1/2 cup Marsala
Sugar to taste
Light grinding of nutmeg
4 firm pears
Heavy whipping cream

Peel the pears leaving the stem for handling and affect; I think it's attractive. Remove the seeds from the pear by CAREFULLY inserting a slender paring knife into the bottom of the pear, then coring out the center. You do not have to be exact in this step. Just get most of the seeds. Next slice a small portion from each pear's bottom allowing it to sit evenly in the pot of bubbling dry red wine. 

Oh my, doesn't that sound wonderful.

Place the pears into a medium-sized, high-sided sauce pot that fits the pears snugly. In a separate bowl, stir together the dry red wine, Marsala, enough sugar to sweeten well (taste to be sure it's nice and sweet) and an aromatic grind of nutmeg. Pour over the pears and adjust with enough water to cover the pears. Bring to a high heat then reduce to simmer until the pears are tender. Insert a knife to check for softness. Not so soft they would fall apart, however. Remove the pears to a bowl, cover and chill until ready to serve. Leave the wine sauce on the heat and stir often to assure it doesn't scorch. Reduce the wine sauce to a light syrupy consistency.  Then place in the fridge to chill with the pears.

Delicious poached pear sitting in a pool of wine sauce and a pillow of fresh whipped cream.

Just before serving, chill your mixer bowl. Bowl and cream should be cold for the fluffiest whipped cream. Add the well-chilled heavy whipping cream to the bowl and mix until soft peaks form. No need to sweeten this cream because the wine sauce is quite sweet enough. Remove the pears from the fridge and place each into a dessert dish (I used a Champagne Coupe) and cascade the burgundy wine sauce over the top to serve. Or puddle a bit of the sauce into the dish, add a dollop of whipped cream and nestle the crimson pear into the cloud of cream. Serve and enjoy with a nice cup of very dark rich coffee, no sugar please. 

Lovely, impressive, easy, elegant, delicious!

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