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Barnstaple Fair Pears

ingredients

serves 4
4 large firm Cornice pears
25 g (1 oz) blanched almonds, split in half
50 g (2 oz) caster sugar
300 ml (1/2 pint) red wine
2 cloves

method

1. Peel the pears, leaving the stalks on. Spike the pears with the almond halves.

2. Put the sugar, wine and the cloves in a saucepan just large enough to hold the pears and heat gently until the sugar has dissolved. Add the pears, standing them upright in the pan, cover and simmer gently for about 15 minutes, until the pears are just tender, basting from time to time with the liquid.

3. Using a slotted spoon transfer the pears to a serving dish. Remove the lid from the pan of syrup, increase the heat and boil fast until the liquid is reduced by half. Pour over the pears and serve hot or cold with thick natural yogurt or clotted cream.

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