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Honey Cardamom Poached Pears

Author Rebecca Lindamood


  • 4 ripe but firm pears Bosc is a good choice.
  • 2 cups Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio
  • 1 cup mild honey
  • 15 whole cardamom pods lightly crushed with the side of a knife or heavy object
  • ½ teaspoon saffron threads
  • Pinch of salt
  • Mascarpone for serving


  • Stir together the Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio, honey, cardamom pods, saffron threads, and the pinch of salt in a 2 quart saucepan.
  • Peel and place the pears in the liquid. Bring the mixture to a gentle boil over medium high heat, then drop the heat to the lowest setting, place a circle of parchment paper directly on the surface of the liquid, and simmer for 15-20 minutes, lifting the parchment paper and gently turning the pears over from time to time.
  • The pears are done when you can easily insert a knife in the base of the pear with no resistance. Transfer the pears to a rimmed plate or bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until well chilled.
  • Discard the parchment, raise the heat back up to medium and bring the mixture to a boil again. Boil the syrup until it has reduced by 2/3 to ¾ of the original volume. Pour it through a fine mesh strainer or sieve into a heat-safe jar or pitcher. Cover with plastic wrap or a lid, and refrigerate until ready to serve.
  • To present the pears, add a dollop (about 2 tablespoons) of mascarpone to a dessert cup or dish and arrange one pear over it. Drizzle a little of the chilled syrup over the top and serve!