While the traditional wine-poached pears will not be easily dethroned, pears poached in liquid infused with oolong tea leaves deserve the same level of attention. These smoky and subtly-perfumed pears are great by themselves; they’re also great with panna cotta or vanilla or coconut ice cream/gelato on the side. Not that these tea-poached pears came out of a need to avoid cooking/baking with alcohol, but the booze-shy among us may find this alcohol-free variation worthy of being added to their repertoire.
These tea-poached pears have been inspired by a similar recipe I’ve seen in O Magazine. It was made with oolong tea leaves.
- 3 large Bosc pears (choose very firm ones), peeled, halved, and cored
- 4 cups water
- 1¼ cups sugar
- ⅓ cup loose oolong tea leaves (Jasmine tea works great too.)
- In a large saucepan, mix the water, sugar, and tea together; bring the mixture to a boil.
- Gently lower the pear halves into the liquid, making sure they’re fully submerged.
- Simmer, covered, for 45 minutes.
- Fish out the pears; set aside, covered.
- Strain the poaching liquid; discard the tea leaves. Put the strained poaching liquid back on the heat and reduce it over low heat until syrupy.
- Plate the pear halves and drizzle the syrup on top.