Saturday, January 28, 2006

Poached Pears

I don't really know why, but I've never really been a big fan of pears (or at least not European pears; Asian pears I do like). I think it's the graininess of them that I don't particularly care for. However, I do like perry and I'm still upset that Trader Joe's stopped carrying dried pears. I also loved Hsiao-Ching Chou's pear-ginger pie, which I begged and pleaded Evelin to make a while ago.

Okay, so maybe I'm undercutting my argument about being a fan or not of pears ... anyway, tonight I had my first go of making poached pears. Considering my ambivalent-to-mixed feelings about pears, I guess it's a little surprising, but I've been craving/thinking about experimenting with poached pears for a few weeks now. Evelin was also more supportive of experimenting with pears than my other craving/thinking about ... braised endive.

Searching on the Food Network recipe site, I decided to go with Sara Moulton's honey-poached pears with brown sugar sour cream recipe. They turned out pretty good: the brown sugar-sour cream sauce was especially nice (I used only one teaspoon of Mount Gay Barbados Sugar Cane Rum instead of the two teaspoons of brandy or dark rum suggested), although the recipe made about twice the amount of sacue that we needed. The problem part was the pears; I managed to not cook them thoroughly enough and they ended up a little crisper than they should have been. Also, the liquid didn't get as syrupy as it should have: That could have been due to the honey I used (I finished up the orange blossom honey we bought a while ago and it was a bit crystallized) or maybe because I cooked things in a sauté pan instead of a saucepan ... actually, I guess if I'd thought about it I should have realized the pears needed to be totally submerged for them to poach well. Still, the favors were nice and if the pears at the farmers market tomorrow look appealing maybe I'll try a different recipe ... maybe this one.

[ASIDE: As I'm writing this, I'm listening to Larua Viers live from the Birchmere thanks to NPR's All Songs Considered and Colin Meloy is up next. Even cooler, both performances will be available as MP3 downloads after the broadcast. The Internets is a great thing ...]

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