|Look what Mark gave me for my birthday!|
Honey and Lavender Poached Pears
4 small Bosc pears
1 bottle red wine
1/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon lavender buds
1 teaspoon whole cloves
1 cinnamon stick
Peel and core the pears, leaving the stem end intact.
Bring remaining ingredients to a simmer. Add pears. If there is not enough wine to cover them, add more wine or water. To keep them submerged for even coloring, place a small plate (Markipedia calls it a twiffler) on top of the pears to weigh them down. Simmer for 10-15 minutes, or until pears are soft and easily pierced with the tip of a sharp knife. (Cooking times will vary based on the ripeness and size of the fruit.)
Put pears in a glass container and cover with some of the cooking syrup. Cool in the refrigerator. Meanwhile, boil down remaining syrup until it is thickens somewhat. Let cool.
Serve napped with sauce and a garnish of mint. A creamy blue cheese (gorgonzola dolce, for example) makes a wonderful accompaniment, as does a hard nutty cheese.