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Perfect Pears

Cherry Poached Pears with Cherry Syrup

If you love a little something sweet at the end of a meal,this light, elegant dessert is a perfect choice. By poaching pears or apples innaturally sweet cherry juice, you tint them a lovely deep red. Using ourreduction technique to concentrate the juice creates a lush, syrupy sauce todrizzle over the fruit. Peppery tarragon provides a grace note, and crunchypistachios add some crunch.
Course Dessert
Keyword perfect pear
Servings 4
Author Robin Asbell


  • 4 large Bosc pears
  • 2 cups dark sweet cherry juice
  • 3 inches orange peel pared in a strip
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup fresh tarragon plus sprigs for garnish
  • chopped, toasted pistachios, vanilla cashew ice cream for serving


  • Using a paring knife, cut a cone shaped hollow in the base of the pear to remove the flower end. Pare straight up into the pear to remove the seeds, hollowing out the pear without cutting through it. Carefully peel the pear, leaving the stem intact.
  • Place the pears in a 2 quart sauce pan and pour in the cherry juice, add the orange peel, vanilla, and cinnamon stick. Over high heat, bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer. Put the lid on, slightly ajar, and cook for about 15 minutes, turning the pears every 5 minutes to color them evenly. Test for doneness by piercing with the paring knife. When the pears are tender but not falling apart, take them off the heat. Use a slotted spoon or tongs to gently remove them from the juice and place on a plate.
  • Put the juice mixture back on the heat and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce to medium and simmer until reduced to about 1/2 cup, about 10 minutes. The juice will get quite syrupy and the bubbles will become large and shiny. Transfer the syrup to a small pitcher. Chill until slightly thickened.
  • Serve the cooked fruit drizzled with syrup and sprinkled with pistachios and chopped tarragon, and a scoop of your favorite plant-based ice cream or sorbet. Garnish with a tarragon sprig.