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Drunken Pears


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  • 3-4 cups good, medium-bodied red wine
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ of a cinnamon stick
  • ½ of a vanilla bean, sliced lengthwise
  • 8 Bosc pears, cleaned and free of any cuts or bruises
  • zest of 2 lemons


Servings 8


Step 1

In a medium saucepan, combine the wine, cinnamon stick, vanilla bean and lemon zest and bring to a boil over medium heat. Stir until the sugar has completely dissolved, about 3-4 minutes. Cut a very thin slice off the bottom of the pears – just enough so they can remain upright – and place close together in a deep-bottomed dish. Make sure to wet the tops of the pears with some of the wine before cooking. Add the wine mixture and place uncovered, in the middle of the oven at 325 for about 1 ½ hours. Baste the pears 2 or 3 times. Place pears on a plate to cool. Pour wine mixture into a small pot. Remove the cinnamon stick and vanilla bean. Bring to a boil over medium heat until wine becomes thick and syrupy. Drizzle wine over pears and serve with a piece of cheese such as gorgonzola or parmigiano. Can be made 1 day ahead; just heat the sauce before serving.

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