Vanilla Poached Pears with Orange Zest

We are still being spoilt by my Mom who is cooking us the most wonderful meals and desserts.  Pete was away on business last week and Dad had returned home to Johannesburg so it was just Mom and I.  I was having my normal day of doing a 101 things and had left the decision of what we were going to eat up to Mom.  After a long day and a warm soothing bath, I popped over to Mom for supper.  What a fabulous treat!  Firstly, I was handed a gin and tonic at the door.  Talk about service! 🙂  How can you have a bad night when it starts like that?  Then the smell – the most wonderful full bodied pork/bacon heaven hit my nasal passages. Mom was roasting a pork fillet wrapped in smokey bacon (think it’s called an armadillo) which she served with creamy mashed potatoes, buttery steamed brussel sprouts, roasted pears and gravy and if that wasn’t enough, keeping with the pears portion of the theme, presented me with a oh so yummy pudding of vanilla poached pears with orange zest (and just for good measure) some cream on the side. 😀  F A B U L O U S !

Vanilla poached pears with orange zest


4 pears peeled and halved lengthways
45ml sugar
¾ cup water
10ml vanilla extract
5ml orange zest
Cream for serving


  1. Place the pears, sugar, water and vanilla extract in a pot and bring to a boil.
  2. Reduce the heat and simmer until the pears are tender.
  3. Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  4. Remove the pears and plate 2 per portion.
  5. Stir through the orange zest into the syrup and pour over the pears.
  6. Serve with cream.

Pears in Red Wine

I am a little behind with Tandy’s Regional and Seasonal challenge which was to cook with pears.  Thankfully I was able to find some and set to work on making Pears in Red Wine.  I used my Mom’s fabulously easy recipe which I would not alter at all but if you like, you can add a stick of cinnamon while poaching the pears and a teaspoon or two of lemon juice.  You can serve these delicious pears hot or cold with cream or ice cream or just on their own with the syrup.  My friend Moira was kind enough to take photographs for me again.

Pears in Red Wine


1 bottle red wine – I used a Pinotage
250ml sugar
20ml vanilla essence
6 to 8 pears peeled


  1. Pour the wine, sugar and vanilla essence into a saucepan and stir to combine all the ingredients.
  2. Add the pears and bring to the boil.
  3. Simmer slowly until the pears are tender.  Mine took an hour.
  4. Remove the pears and reduce the the liquid to form a syrup.