Poached pears

W is also for…Wine poached pears with honey and thyme

This is a very simple dessert, that looks “posh” i.e. looks like it took a lot more effort than it really did. You could serve this at a dinner party or perhaps even for Valentines day (or any other cosy night in for that matter).

I’ve used a sweet Moscato rosé wine from Barefoot Wines, which is perfect for this kind of fruit dessert. I served mine with vanilla ice-cream, which I think is best with pears, but if you’ve got your own flavour combination (e.g. crème fraîche, chocolate ice cream) don’t let me stand in the way.

The recipe is for 2 people, but can easily be multiplied up for more.

Preparation time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 2 semi-ripe pears;
  • 2 tbsp honey;
  • 4 sprigs of thyme;
  • 250ml rosé wine;
  • 1 large knob of butter

Poached pears

Recipe:

  1. Peel the pears, then half and core.
  2. Put a frying/skillet pan over a medium heat and melt the butter. Once it starts foaming add the thyme sprigs and the pear halves cut-side down. Fry for about 3-4 minutes until the cut-side has taken a bit of colour.
  3. Remove the pears from the frying pan and put on a plate whilst you make the poaching liquid.
  4. Add the wine and honey to the pan and turn the heat up high, all the while giving a good stir to bring up any crispy bits from the bottom of the pan (as they have the most flavour). Cook down until the liquid  has halved in volume.
  5. Take the ice cream out of the freezer at this point so it has time to soften before serving.
  6. Turn the temperature down to a low-medium heat then add the pears (cut-side up this time) to the pan. Spoon a bit of the liquid over the pears then put a lid over the pan and leave to simmer/poach for 10-12 minutes until the pears have softened. The majority of the liquid would have cooked away/been absorbed.
  7. Serve two pear halves with a drizzle of the poaching juices, a fresh sprig of thyme and vanilla ice cream.

Poached pears

W is for…wine-boosted baguette

Firstly apologies for the long gap in the blog. I decided as part of a health kick to do ‘dry January’, which unfortunately meant that I could trust myself to cook my remaining (alcoholic) recipes, so I had to wait until wet February to continue the blog, when dry January was well and truly over.

This recipe, is a bit of a cheat meal…it’s like combing your baguette sandwich and glass of wine all in one and baked, full of cheesy goodness. I call it my wine-boosted baguette, or simply the Boozy Baguette. The wine I used in this recipe was a sweet Moscato from BareFoot wines (because I had a particular sweet-tooth moment), but any grape variety will work.

Preparation time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 25 minutes

Ingredients (per person):

  • ½ baguette;
  • 1 glass of white wine;
  • 3 slices of ham (try to get it from the butcher rather than the pre-packed stuff) cut into bite-size pieces;
  • one handful of grated gruyère cheese
  • smooth Dijon mustard

Recipe:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 200°C.
  2. Slice the baguette into 2-inch slices and place cut side down into a baking dish. Pour over the glass of wine so a little seeps into each piece of baguette.
  3. Spread a small amount of mustard on each slice. Then sprinkle over the ham and top with the grated cheese.
  4. Put in the oven for 25 minutes or until crispy and golden on top. Serve with the rest of wine.

Boozy baguette Boozy baguette