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Poached Pears with Stilton

Pears, in peak season from late summer through January, become a truly sophisticated dessert when served poached with a slice of Stilton blue cheese. This recipe is adapted from "Entertaining." Also Try: Breaded Pork Chops with Thyme, Potato and Leek Gratin

  • yield: Makes 5

Ingredients

  • 2 (250 mL) bottles dry white wine, such as sauvignon blanc
  • 2 (3-inch) strips lemon zest
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 sticks cinnamon
  • 1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
  • 5 firm, ripe Bosc or Bartlett pears, peeled, stems intact
  • Stilton cheese, for serving

Directions

  1. Step 1

    Pour wine into a medium saucepan; add lemon juice, lemon zest, sugar, cinnamon, and vanilla bean and seeds. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring, until sugar has dissolved. Continue cooking for 5 minutes more.

  2. Step 2

    Add pears and reduce heat to a gentle simmer. Place a parchment paper round in saucepan to cover and submerge pears. Cook until pears are easily pierced with a knife, but not mushy, about 45 minutes.

  3. Step 3

    Using a slotted spoon, transfer pears to a large bowl and set aside. Return saucepan to stove; bring to a boil over medium-high heat and cook until reduced by half. Pour reduced liquid over pears. Place a parchment paper round in bowl to cover and submerge pears; cover bowl and transfer to refrigerator at least 6 hours and up to overnight.

  4. Step 4

    One hour before serving, remove pears from refrigerator; bring to room temperature. Just before serving, halve and core pears and serve drizzled with reduced poaching liquid and a slice of cheese.

Source
The Martha Stewart Show, September 2010