Pears poached in red wine with basil
I know pears are better suited to autumn, but this dessert, with pears fragrant with basil and coated in heavy syrup, is sumptuous. For something completely decadent, serve with hokey-pokey ice cream. The syrup can be reused several times for poaching other fruit such as apples or peaches.
- Put the wine, port, peppercorns, zest of 1 lemon, basil and honey into a deep saucepan.
- Bring to the boil, then remove from the heat.
- Peel the pears, leaving the stems on, and scoop out the cores.
- Drop the pears into the warm syrup, return to the heat and simmer gently for 10-15 minutes or until tender.
- Remove from the heat, cover and leave the pears in the syrup to cool. Arrange them on plates.
- Pour the red wine syrup through a sieve, discarding the solids and spoon a little over the pears.