Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Fresh Pear Sauce with White Wine and Cardamom

September has come upon us. The chill of night, the heaped cumulus clouds in the sharp blue sky of day ... and the abundance, nay, plethora, of fresh fruit lying around the kitchen. For example, the armful of pears given to me last week.

To a frugal cook, such questions as, "Can you make sauce out of pears like you can with apples?" are common. The answer to this one is, I am happy to say, most definitely yes.

I chose white wine over red to avoid the potential result of a nasty shade of pink or purple in the resulting sauce; as well, it seemed cardamom would go well with pears' more exotic taste, and indeed it does. But stealing the cinnamon from apples would do, too, if you have no cardamom.

This sauce is wonderfully fragrant and delicious; the pears' flavor mingles in a happily companionable way with the wine and cardamom. It's truly elegant enough to serve with a special meal such as roast pork, or alongside an autumnal dessert like fresh gingerbread.

About 10 fresh pears
A blub of white wine
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground cardamom seeds (I used a mortar and pestle)

Peel, core and quarter or dice the pears, and put them in a medium-sized pan or pot. Toss in the blub of white wine and the cardamom, and bring the whole thing to a simmer, cooking until the sauce reaches the texture you prefer--slightly chunky or more smooth. If you like, run a potato masher through it to even the texture.

Makes about 5 1-cup servings.

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