These instructions call for poaching pears in simple sugar water with lemon, but you can substitute fruit juice or wine for some or all of the liquid, and add spices and seasonings as you like. Experiment!
1. Combine 1 cup sugar, 4 cups water, and about 1 tablespoon of lemon juice in a non-aluminum 4-quart saucepan. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium high heat and cook briefly until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and set aside.
2. Peel 4 pears, leaving the stem intact.
3. Using a melon baller, scoop out the core of the pear from the bottom.
4. Place the pears in the poaching liquid and return them to the heat. To keep pears submerged, cut a circle of parchment paper just a little smaller than the diameter of the saucepan and place the circle on top of the pears.
5. Bring the pears to a gentle boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Poach the pears until tender, about 30 minutes. A toothpick should easily slide through the pear.
6. When the pears are fully poached, cool them to room temperature in their poaching liquid.
7. Pour the pears and poaching liquid into a clean container, cover and refrigerate until ready to use. Poached pears will keep well for 1-2 days in the fridge.
Barbara Adams Beyond Wonderful
How To Cooking Tips and Techniques.