Recipe – Saffron Poached Pears


I love the simplicity of these poached pears that Janni Kyritsis taught me to make many years ago. At MG Garage, he served them alongside a delicate cardamom-scented blancmange made with yoghurt – I like them with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream or dollop of Chantilly cream, or just on their own for a sweet ending to a picnic lunch! You want a slightly fruity white wine for this dish, I use White Fences sauvignon blanc from Mudgee … and drink the rest of the bottle with the dessert.

Serves 4

Ingredients
  • 2 cups fruity white wine
  • 2 cups water
  • 1¼ cups castor sugar
  • Generous pinch saffron threads (see note)
  • 4 small firm pears

Note: Use top-quality saffron stamens, such as those imported from Iran by Saffron & More, for the distinctive aroma and beautiful colour they impart.

Method
  1. Place wine, water, sugar and saffron into a saucepan just large enough to hold the pears snugly and bring to the boil, stirring occasionally until sugar dissolves.
  2. Meanwhile, peel and core pears.
  3. Add pears to the wine mixture; if necessary, add enough boiling water to just cover the pears.
  4. Reduce heat, cover with a piece of baking paper and a lid and cook on the lowest heat for about 30 minutes, until tender.
  5. Remove from heat and set aside to cool in the poaching liquid.
  6. Cover and refrigerate until needed.

For more inspiration from Janni Kyritsis, check out Be Inspired’s Month of Greek.
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