The Benefits of Ginger: Wine-Poached Pears

Warming ginger jazzes up winter foods.

| January/February 2001


Serves 4

It’s no wonder fresh ginger tastes pungent. It contains a family of molecules called gingerols that are structurally related to capsaicin, the compound responsible for the hot bite of chiles.

Simmering pears in red wine turns them into a warm and elegant dessert.

• 1 1/4 cups red wine
• 1/2 cup sugar
• 1/2 cup peeled, fresh ginger slices (not minced)
• 4 ripe but firm pears

1. Select a noncorrosive skillet or saucepan with a fitted lid, large enough for 8 pear halves, sliced lengthwise, to line the pan. If you don’t have a pan large enough, cook the fruit in two batches in smaller pans.

2. Combine the wine, sugar, and ginger in the pan. Simmer over medium heat until the sugar dissolves. While the mixture heats, carefully core, peel, and halve the pears, lengthwise.

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