Pomegranate Poached Pears

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Pomegranate Poached Pears

Pomegranate Poached Pears

Pears are simmered in a blend of tart pomegranate juice and sweet dessert wine with gorgeous garnet-red results. The pears are served with the reduced poaching liquid and a sprinkling of pomegranate seeds and toasted almonds. A touch of tangy reduced-fat sour cream adds both flavor and visual contrast. This dessert makes a striking finale to any festive meal.

Serves 4

Prep Time 30 min

Total Time 75 min.

Ingredients

  • 4 ripe, firm Bosc pears
  • 1 1/2 cups pomegranate juice
  • 1 cup sweet dessert wine, such as Muscatel or Riesling
  • 2 tablespoon sliced almonds
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds, (1/2 large fruit; see Tip)
  • 4 tablespoon reduced-fat sour cream, or low-fat plain yogurt
  • 4 fresh or dried bay leaves, for garnish

Cooking Directions

Step 1

Peel pears, leaving them whole and stems intact. Slice off the bases so the pears will stand upright. Use an apple corer to remove cores, if desired, working from the base up.

Step 2

Place the pears on their sides in a large saucepan or small Dutch oven. Pour pomegranate juice and wine over the pears. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer gently until the pears are tender when pierced with the tip of a sharp knife, 30 to 45 minutes. Turn very gently once or twice as they cook so they color evenly. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pears to a shallow bowl and set aside.

Step 3

Boil the poaching liquid over high heat until the sauce is reduced to 1/2 cup, 15 to 20 minutes.

Step 4

Meanwhile, toast almonds in a small dry skillet over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until light golden and fragrant, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl to cool.

Step 5

To serve, spoon 1 tablespoon sauce onto each of 4 dessert plates. Place a pear upright on each plate. Drizzle remaining sauce over each pear. Sprinkle pomegranate seeds around the pears and top with the almonds. Garnish each serving with a dollop of sour cream (or yogurt) and a bay leaf.


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