Seckel Pears in Mulled Red Wine
Seckel pears are small and sweet and make for an elegant dessert when poached in red wine and served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. The powerful combination of mulling spices creates a harmonious alchemy that will transport you back in time. With your first bite, you’ll feel as though you’re dining with Medieval kings and listening to minstrels sing of far off lands.
- 1• cups sugar
- 1 750-ml. bottle of full-bodied red wine
- 2 cinnamon sticks, broken in half
- 3 star anise pods
- 5 whole cloves
- 4 approx. 3-inch long strips of orange peel, bitter white pith scraped or cut off
- 12 seckel pears, ripe but not overly soft
In a medium-sized pot (3 qt.) over medium heat, combine the sugar and wine. (If the pot is any larger, the pears will not be adequately covered by the wine.) Stir until the sugar dissolves completely. Add the cinnamon, star anise, cloves, and orange peel. Bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, peel the pears. Be sure to leave the stem intact for the prettiest presentation. Add the pears to the simmering wine. Adjust the temperature as needed so that the pears poach in liquid that’s just barely simmering with only occasional bubbles (don’t boil!). Poach until the pears are soft and tender, about 1• hours. If the wine doesn’t fully cover the pears, use a spoon to “baste” them from time to time and gently turn them over. This will ensure even cooking and color distribution.
Serve warm (but not hot) with vanilla ice cream. Yum!!
**The leftover syrup can be frozen to make a delicious slushy or use it as a base for festive cocktails.
Please include the following in any reprint:
The following excerpt is taken from The Mystic Cookbook by Meadow and Denise Linn. It is published by Hay House (Available November 26, 2012) and available from www.hayhouse.com.