Bet you’ll never poach pears in a pan again after you try this method – it produces perfect pears every time.
6 pears (I used firm packham pears) ½ cup freshly squeezed orange juice ¼ cup maple syrup (see Recipe Notes below) ½ cup water Ice cream, unsweetened yoghurt or crème fraîche to serve
1 Preheat a slow cooker for 30 minutes on Preheat setting or Low.
2 Peel pears, leaving stalks intact. If the pears won’t sit flat, slice a tiny bit of flesh off the bottom with a sharp knife (test with a skewer – it should barely find resistance). Mix orange juice, maple syrup and water together. Put pears in slow cooker and pour over syrup. Cover with a lid and cook increase temperature to High.
3 Cook pears for 1½-2 hours, or until tender. Transfer to a plate and pour syrup into a small saucepan. Reduce syrup by half. Dish pears onto individual plates and spoon over a little syrup. Serve with ice cream, yoghurt or crème fraîche.
The secret too these maple pears is genuine maple syrup from Canada. Avoid using maple-flavoured syrup or other imitations. See notes on Maple Syrup for further information.
If preferred, the pears can be served chilled. They will keep 2-3 days, refrigerated, but store the syrup separately so it doesn’t get diluted from juices seeping out of the pears.