Rosemary Red Wine Poached Pears
with Honey Rosemary Mascarpone Filling and Candied Walnuts
Once upon a time, a long, long time ago, I worked for a company in California. Sometimes I would go out to California for work, and one night I went out for dinner at some funky California restaurant and I spotted a merlot poached pear on the menu. I was so intrigued by the idea, I had to try it, so I ordered a salad for dinner and this merlot soaked pear for dessert. I remember wondering if it would be classified as food or an adult beverage on my expense report, because the office manager wouldn’t allow adult beverages to be expensed.
I don’t recall which side of the expense report this dessert fell on, but the memory of it stuck with me , and re-surfaced when I suddenly was blessed with some pears from my friend’s pear tree. I HAD to make some red wine poached pears. I opened a bottle of my dad’s Pinot Noir, picked a bit of rosemary, and carefully peeled my pears. I thought the dessert needed something creamy, and a little crunch as well, so I took some mascarpone and whipped it with rosemary and honey (and a bit of the red wine syrup), then added a couple candied walnuts on top of the cream. NOW it was perfect!
I found myself drowning in pleasure, savoring every bite of what is probably the most decadently perfect adult dessert ever. Seriously, red wine, rosemary, sweet honey mascarpone, and a sweet crunchy walnut on top. The mix of textures, tastes, scents and colors is divine. It’s an elegant, light dessert that will make you and your guests feel special.
I shared them with my yoga friends tonight and they loved them, so I’m posting this recipe right away for my yoga friends!
- 4 - 6 ripe pears
- 1 1/2 cups red wine
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 2 teaspoons real vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup sugar
- A small sprig of fresh rosemary
- 4 oz. mascarpone cheese
- 1 oz. light cream cheese
- 1 oz. Greek yogurt
- 1 teaspoon of the rosemary wine syrup (after reduction)
- 1 teaspoon honey
- 1/2 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves
- Peel the pears carefully, leaving stems intact. Slice vertically, then use a melon baller to neatly remove the core.
- In a large saucepan, mix the red wine, vanilla and sugar. Add the cinnamon stick and rosemary and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer, gently add the pears, and simmer for 10 minutes, then flip the pears to poach the other side. Simmer for another 10 minutes or until the pears are fork-tender. Let the cheeses set out while while you're poaching pears to warm them.
- Remove from heat and let the pears bathe in the lovely liquid for about 30 minutes, then using a slotted spoon, gently remove the pears from the pan and bring the wine mixture back to a boil. Reduce to simmer and cook, uncovered, for about 20 minutes or so or until the syrup is reduced by about half.
- Once the syrup is done, make the filling: stir together the mascarpone, cream cheese, Greek yogurt, wine syrup, honey, and chopped rosemary. Get out the mixer and quickly whip the cheese mixture until it's fluffy and everything is well mixed.
- Set your pears on serving plates. Add a small spoonful of the filling to each pear half, drizzle with a bit of the red wine syrup, then add candied walnuts on top. Garnish with fresh rosemary if desired.
The "bathing" time for the pears is optional. You can remove the pears from the syrup immediately after poaching. I just left them in there for a while longer to let more of that lovely red wine color and taste soak in to infuse the pears completely.
RECIPE SOURCE: http://www.sumptuousspoonfuls.com/
© Copyright 2013, Sumptuous Spoonfuls. All images & content are copyright protected. I love it when you share, but please do not use my images on your own site/page without prior permission. If you want to publish any of my images, please ask first. Sharing, pinning, and tweeting is always appreciated as long as the shares and pins link back to here for the recipe. If you want to republish this recipe as your own, please re-write the recipe in your own words or link back to this post for the recipe.