Pomegranate-poached pears

Pomegranate poached pears

Pomegranate poached pears (Credit: Marge Perry)

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4 Bosc pears

1 1/2 cups unsweetened pomegranate juice

1 cup port

3/4 cup sugar

1. Peel the pears and slice off the bottom 1/4-inch to make a flat surface. Work from the bottom of the pears, and, using a melon baller, scoop out the cores. Leave the stems attached.

2. Combine the pomegranate juice, port and sugar in a saucepan just large enough to hold the pears on their sides in a single layer. Bring the liquid to a boil just long enough to dissolve the sugar; add the pears, allowing them to lie on their sides. Add enough water to completely submerge the pears when they are lying on their sides (about 1 cup). Place a pot lid smaller than the pot you are using over the pears to keep them submerged in the liquid. Bring to a boil; immediately reduce the heat and simmer 30 minutes, or until the pears are lightly colored and tender when pricked with a fork. Leave the pears in the liquid (refrigerate when cooled) overnight.

3. Remove the pears, which now will be more deeply colored. Boil down the liquid until reduced to about 1 cup; about 15 minutes.

4. Serve the pears with the sauce poured over and puddled beneath them; garnish with almonds and pomegranate seeds if desired. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each pear: 340 calories, 1 g protein, 82 g carbohydrates, 6 g fiber, 0 g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 15 mg sodium

TIP: To easily remove the seeds from a pomegranate, cut it in quarters and squeeze each piece as you would a lemon, allowing the seeds to fall in a bowl of cold water. The membrane will float to the top of the water and the seeds will sink to the bottom.

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