Poached Pears with Ice Cream



Course Dessert
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 4


  • 4 pears firm, medium-sized , such as Anjou, Bartlett, or Bosc
  • 2 beets medium, peeled and sliced
  • 1 bottle red wine
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean cut in half lengthwise
  • 2 cinnamon sticks whole
  • 1 orange peel
  • 1 lemon peel
  • 2 cloves whole
  • 1 star anise
  • Avalon Organic Ice Cream we use French Vanilla


  1. Peel the pears and place in medium saucepan. (Leaving the pears whole will allow for dramatic presentation. If you cut them in half and core before poaching, they’re easier to eat and the color and spices saturate the center.)
  2. Add wine, sugar, vanilla bean, cinnamon stick, orange peel, lemon peel, sliced beets, cloves, star anise and just enough water to cover pears.
  3. Set saucepan over high heat, and bring liquid to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, and cook, occasionally stirring gently, over medium-low heat, until a paring knife easily pierces pears, about 25 minutes. Remove pan from heat.
  4. Using a slotted spoon, transfer pears to a plate. Remove the beets.(You can remove the spices at this point, but I left them in while reducing for extra flavor.) Place over medium-high heat, and cook until liquid has been reduced to a syrup that coats the back of a wooden spoon, about 45 minutes. Remove spices. Let cool; store pears in an airtight container until ready to serve.
  5. When ready to serve, arrange pears on a platter or on individual plates, and drizzle with poaching liquid. They’re delicious on their own and would also be great topped with vanilla ice cream.