Red wine and fruit has always been a classic pairing especially since fruity flavors are often found as undertones of many red wines. Poaching fruit in wine not only gives it a beautiful color and helps soften the fruit, it also brings out the subtle flavors in the wine and gives a better appreciation for the nuances found in each bottle. This dessert is super simple but its sophisticated and delicious and probably healthy right? To one up this recipe, grate some chocolate over it before serving.
Red Wine Poached Pears
- Cooking and Prep: 30 m
- Serves: 4
Prepare the Pears
Combine first eight ingredients in heavy large saucepan. Stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves and mixture comes to simmer.
Add pears and return mixture to simmer. Reduce heat and simmer slowly until pears are tender when pierced with knife, about 25 minutes. Transfer pears to plate.
Boil liquid in saucepan until reduced to three cups, about 20 minutes. (Can be made one day ahead. Cover and chill pears in poaching liquid. Before serving, rewarm over medium-low heat until pears are heated through.)
Arrange one warm pear and one scoop of ice cream on each of four plates. Drizzle some poaching liquid over. Sprinkle with chocolate shavings, if desired.
What I would use it for:
Braising any tough cut of meat
Deglazing a pan of chicken
Pouring into hot chocolate
Drinking plain- hello!
Making any rich tomato based sauce unreal
Mixing with barbeque sauce for something unexpected in a marinade
Mixing with anything chocolate
Mix with 1 c simple syrup, freeze and scrape for a red wine granita
Use in a bath to soften skin
Clean produce and remove bacteria (yes this totally works!)
Revive dead plants
Oh! anything with mushrooms
There are thousands of bottles of the deep red luxurious liquid but between the types and tastes there are so many versions of red wine how do you know what to use when?
Red wine is one of those things that can be overwhelming for people, especially those who aren’t wine drinkers. No one is expecting anyone to a connoisseur who swills and spits but here’s a basic run down of red wine. The general rule used to be that wine was labeled based on the region is came from and from there you could discern how it would taste. But over time, wine was labeled based on how it tasted (similar to so and so region) versus where it was from. That is how you can now have champagne from Israel instead of from France,
To find a red wine you enjoy, pick something that tastes pleasant. Look for something that feels smooth in your mouth and where you can taste hints of other flavors. As a general rule, dry red wine needs to “breathe” (expose to air) in order to awaken its flavors.
Here are some things you can expect from common types of dry red wine.
Cabernet- herbs black cherry and olives
Merlot- plump powerful and fruity
Malbec -spice, sour cherry, tart
Pinot nior- delicate and reminiscent of cola blackberry and plum
Syrah/shiraz plum-black pepper and clove
Zinfandel- raspberry blackberry cherry and raisin
Basic rule: don’t cook with anything you wouldn’t drink! I’m looking at you matouk rouge soft! In general, a dry wine is usually what recipe call for unless they specify using a sweet vintage specifically.