Monday, July 31, 2006
Winter bliss in a bowl
Oh. My. Goddess. Dessert orgasm still happening in my mouth and I just have to share before it fades away. Warning: vague cooking language follows, because I am quite often an intuitive cook.
medium saucepan. two brown pears, peeled and a bit of the bottom sliced off to let them sit straight, but leave the stalks on. Half a litre of water. Half a litre of red wine. A good big handful of brown sugar. four or so cloves. A vanilla bean. juice of a lemon.
Put everything but the pears in the saucepan and get it simmering. Sit the pears in the liquid and simmer on very low heat with the lid on until they are tender. At some point reasonably early on tip the pears on their sides and give them a few minutes to colour at the top. Then sit them up again. Once they are tender (could be 30 minutes, could be 2 hours, depending on the ripeness of the pears), place pears in bowls, slurp some syrup around them and add a big dob of very thick cream.
BUT! DO NOT EAT ALL THE SYRUP. Keep half of it. Once cooled, drain it into a container until the next time you want to eat pears (we lasted till the next night). Then put it back in the saucepan and heat until simmering. Add pears. You will have to lie them on their sides this time because there won't be as much liquid. If necessary, top up. But only if absolutely necessary. Cover and simmer on very low heat again, turning the pears occasionally to even the colour.
This time will be better than the last, because the syrup will reduce to a thick sauce, and the cream will make the combination taste like wine-flavoured toffee.
OOOooohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.... I'd show you a photo, but all that is left is a pear stalk and some cloves in a skerrick of syrup. I think I have to go lie down for a while... it was SO RICH!