a pair of things to do with pears

Pears, I think, must be my favorite fruit.  I like the scent of coconut, but even coconut doesn’t really taste like coconut.  Mangos are delish, but can be fibrous if you get a bad one.  Bananas are too gooey, apples too…appley.  Grapes stress me out.  Oranges get under my nails (although they are divine in orange/cranberry scones!).

Pears, though, are sensuous and grainy and sweet; curvy, like a sexy cartoon character.  As a kid in the lunchroom, I’d first pick out the cherries, then the pears from the stuff they claimed was “fruit cocktail”.  Sometimes I’d get a pear mixed up with some other fruit, though.  I still don’t know what the Imposter Fruit is, but it’s not pear.  …wanna be’s…sheesh…  

The first time I’d had Moscato wine was back home at our friend Chris’ restaurant, The Pasta House.  If you’re ever in Springfield, Missouri, you should stop in at the corner of National and Republic Road.  Chris and his wife Cindy are Good People and the food is honest to goodness FOOD.  Anyway, Chris brought out a bottle of this sweet wine while my husband and I were having our first date night after our daughter was born.  It was also our anniversary Numero Uno (married in October, pregnant by Christmas…wow!) so this wine is very special to us.  We’ve been married for ten years and Moscato Allegra is Our Wine.  We don’t really have A Song, but we have settled on an alcoholic beverage.  We’ve got our priorities very straight, indeed.

This is not a bottle of Moscato Allegra. ...but it'll do in a pinch...

What follows here are things to do with pears and Moscato wine, two of my favorite sweet things (aside from chocolate, of course, but that goes without saying).

Balsamic Reduction served alongside Poached Pears and Moscato Syrup

1) in a large-ish sauce pan add one cup Moscato wine and two cups sugar.  Turn heat to medium/low and simmer until all sugar is dissolved and the mixture has reduced by about a third.

Hello, Beautiful.

2) in a small saute pan, add enough Moscato wine to cover the bottom of the pan plus an inch.  Place a halved pear in the wine and warm over low heat.  If you’d like, of course, you can submerge the pears in wine (which is actually what poaching is, but I’m just a Food Nerd, what do you want?), however, that’s an awful lot of wine… 😉

3) use another small sauce pan and reduce some Cinnamon Pear Balsamic Vinegar by half.  (Yes, I got it from Green Gate Olive Oils.)

4) place the warmed pear on a dessert plate, spoon the syrup over the top and add three or four drops of the vinegar reduction on the side.  (what I did, however, was use the pear as a spoon and scooped up whole mouth-fulls of the syrup.  I then stuck my finger in the vinegar reduction and scooped up still more syrup…you should just do it that way.)

5) Don’t eat so much of it you get a hangover and cyber-bully me.  You’ve been warned: this stuff is tasty.  

Preserved Pears in Moscato Syrup

This is crazy-easy, but I’m not going to tell you how to Put Up because I’m not an expert and if you give yourself Botulism, I don’t want you to sue me.  So look it up, mmkay?

Make double the recipe of syrup listed above.  Get out all of your canning goodies, sanitize, prepare, etc.  Peel and dice some pears, toss them in the syrup and let them hangout while your jars and lids are getting their “Boily Baths” (that’s what my son calls it).

If you want, you can add cinnamon sticks or vanilla beans to the jars when you pack them. This stuff is so awesome and easy and classy looking…you’ll feel like Suzy Homemaker Goes to Hollywood.  

…er…well…maybe that’s just me and the wine talking…

I cooked with it all, I promise. Really! ...sort of. (hiccup)
Moscato Wine Syrup. Edible Art. I think I'm buzzed...excuse me...

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