Poached pears are great as an appetizer or dessert.
- 1/2 bottle (1 1/2 cups) Port Wine
- 1 lemon
- 1 navel orange, quartered
- 3/4 cup maple sugar
- 1/2 vanilla bean, split, or 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 3 star anise
- 4 small ripe pears (any variety), peeled
In a small saucepan, off the heat, combine the wine, the juice from the lemon and orange, 1 of the squeezed orange quarters, the maple sugar, vanilla, cinnamon stick, and star anise.
Add the pears and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, turning the pears occasionally, until they're easily pierced with the tip of a knife, about 25 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pears to individual plates.
Remove and discard the orange quarter and spices. Return the liquid to a simmer and cook until syrupy and reduced by two-thirds, about 15 minutes, depending on size of pan. Spoon the sauce over the pears.
Keene's Top Chef Competition - November 16, 2017