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
20ml vanilla essence
6 to 8 pears peeled
Pour the wine, sugar and vanilla essence into a saucepan and stir to combine all the ingredients.
Add the pears and bring to the boil.
Simmer slowly until the pears are tender. Mine took an hour.
Remove the pears and reduce the the liquid to form a syrup.
This is my take on the famous “Boeuf Bourguignon”, with the addition of ground coriander, celery and garlic. It is a super easy recipe and the rich full flavours are guaranteed to impress family and friends. A good rule of thumb when cooking with wine (which I got from the late Keith Floyd) is if it is good enough to drink, it is good enough to cook with, after all, you don’t want to drink a yucky wine, why then would you want to cook with it. If you prefer, you can replace half the wine with a good rich beef stock. Serve with creamy mashed potatoes and if you want to go the French route, include chunks of baguette.
Beef and Red Wine Stew
1.5kg soft shin or chuck cubed
30ml cake flour
15ml ground coriander
1 onion diced
3 celery stalks diced
3 carrots diced
8 rashers streaky bacon
1 head of garlic separated into peeled cloves
12 baby onions peeled
750ml red wine
1 punnet baby black mushrooms
40ml fresh flat leaf parsley roughly chopped
Salt and black pepper to taste
Dust the beef with the flour and coriander and fry in batches until well browned and set aside.
Fry the onion, celery, carrots, bacon and garlic cloves until soft and slightly browned.
Deglaze the pot with a little red wine.
Add the baby onions, beef and the rest of the red wine and simmer until the meat is tender – approximately an hour and a half.
Add the mushrooms and simmer for a further 15 minutes.