Pears poached in red wine with vanilla

An elegant dessert, poached pears are simple to make. The sweetness of the fruit works so well with the wine syrup.

Serves 6


6 large pears750ml bottle of full-bodied red wine2 teaspoons vanilla extract1 vanilla pod, plus extra for decoration (optional)250g caster sugar1 cinnamon stick, broken in half


  • Peel the pears, leaving the stalks intact, and trim the base. Arrange upright in a small to medium saucepan (they should fit snugly in a single layer).

  • Pour over the wine and add the vanilla extract, vanilla pod (if using), sugar and cinnamon. Bring to the boil over a medium heat.

  • Reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer gently for 30 minutes, moving the pears around every 10 minutes or so.

  • Using a slotted spoon, lift out the pears and transfer to a large plate. Cover with foil and set aside.

  • Return the wine to a medium heat and boil for 30 minutes (uncovered) until reduced to a syrup consistency, stirring occasionally. Leave to cool. Remove the vanilla pod and cinnamon stick.

  • To serve, place a pear on a plate and drizzle over the wine syrup. Decorate with a vanilla pod if you like.

The recipes are all taken from Gino's new book - click here for more information.