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Brandy Glazed Poached Bosc Pears w/Ginger Recipe

Visiting home reminds me of how fun cooking really is! There’s always a surprise, a new concoction, a new cooking method mami and I debate over, a new ingredient papi came across and starts using in everything and of course the treat of eating our classical dishes. The unpredictability of what is liable to show up on the counter for anyone’s enjoyment makes life so sweet.


By starch contrast, cooking in Atlanta is almost a chore. I know when and what I’m cooking 80% of the time. It’s either 10+ flans for pick-up on Fridays, a last minute call for a dinner or cocktail party, in which case I have 5 go-to menus ready to go, and cooking for myself always entails little deviation from my poor girl food options: rice, eggs, tuna, tomatoes and onions– all on the same plate.

No element of surprise here.


Thank God my my favorite time of the year has knocked on my door. Everything about fall and winter makes me the most jovial woman ever. I’m filled with giddy feelings of love, warmth, giving, spontaneity and of course unplanned shopping. Fall food options are sexy, delicious and more than inviting!

They foster a sense of comfort and wealth. I love it!

So, when mami walked in with three pounds of Bosc pears last week, I knew immediately they couldn’t just be bitten into. They’re in season which makes them perfect to keep in full stock all winter long. Something soft and perfumey had to be made. Something that would be pacify every emotion without leaving with a huge sense of sinful guilt.

When experimenting at home with mami or even papi, it’s most fun to retrospectively realize we take certain foods for granted. These pears are a perfect example. They’re not really part of the Latin cuisine. I don’t remember seeing a single pear tree in Havana, let alone sold at any of the super mercados.

If you consider Bosc pears are winter pears and harvest from October through April, it’s obvious why they don’t grow in Cuba. But, we don’t even have  imported varieties. And if I really think about it (not that I’m hawking other shoppers) I don’t think I’ve ever seen a Latin person buy pears when grocery shopping. Shocking. But, our fruits are naturally more tropical and they’re damn tasty. When you’re limited to one certain cuisine, you rob yourself of so much goodness. Fortunately for me, our family is very much acclimated to all things Americana (and international) so our palates are attracted to just about anything  and most foods are fair game.

I’m a gringa for the most part. So yes, I eat a lot of non-Latin foods and as you would guess, make a lot of fusion food.

A lot of gringa in me is exhibited  in the excitement I shared in this fantastic pear dessert post two years ago. It turned out to be so delicate and offered pure bliss during a chilly fall day. I was convinced I’d be making it all season long. Yeah, not so much.  Ask if I’ve made it since… a poor excuse for not making it since last 2009 would be  pura vagancia. But, it’s one of those quintessential comfort desserts that never gets old.

That impromptu dessert mami made inspired these sautéed pears. I went for accessible ingredients, again, using up the remaining Brandy I used for the reduction sauce used in the goat cheese flan and lamb sauce. I thought ginger would be strinkingly appropriate, especially since I’d been using it to boil to kill this cold. Mami submitted her authoritative input and insisted I add a few chunks of fresh pineapple, a fruit she can eat by the pounds.

There was absolutely no rhyme or reason to this recipe other than my desire to eat something really delicious without expending too much thought or energy.  It was raining in DC and I needed comfort food.

The pears were crisp and the pineapples were ultra sweet. The marriage could only be timeless. All I needed to make was a tasty syrup these pears could bathe in. That was elementary enough.

Don’t be fooled by its simplicity  my friends. Once the pears are cooked and the syrup is done, what you end up eating is a forkful of butter soft pears that go down as smooth as a serving of fine Brandy.

Unlike my mom’s version, I left out cloves and butter (since I wasn’t roasting). This glaze was thinner than mami’s, but just as luscious. And truthfully, if you’re pressed for time, make these instead. 15 minutes and you’re done!

Save the other ones for when you have more time and want something your eye can’t miss.

This is exactly what I need: fast, simple, over the top good and flexible enough to make over and over without a recipe. 4 pears yielded enough for 12 servings. This is what you call an every day, sit on the counter, offer to anyone that walks in the door kinda good, good dessert!

Happy, delicious and uber sexy fall to you! There’s more to come!

* on our second night of enjoying these lovely pears, we paired them with a few slices of cream cheese. Who knew pears and cream cheese would work!

Eat well, love unapologetically, pray with true intention, and take care of yourself.

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  • 4 Bosc pears, peeled and sliced
  • 1.5 cup sugar in the raw
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup French Brandy
  • 1/2 cup pineapple, chopped
  • 3 tbsp. ginger, grated
  • 1 tsp. ground nutmeg (optional)


In large, deep skillet, add sugar, water and ginger and stir. Cook on medium heat until sugar has fully dissolved, stirring occasionally. Add pears and nutmeg and stir. Reduce heat to medium-low over and let cook until pears are tender, about 15 minutes and sauce has thickened a bit. Uncover and Brandy and pineapples. Simmer for 10 minutes until pineapple has softened and Brandy is infused.

Serve warm.

* this dessert is great with ice cream, cream cheese slices or rum cake.   

66 thoughts on “Brandy Glazed Poached Bosc Pears w/Ginger Recipe

  1. This just makes me think of ONE word; WOW!!!! 😀
    Amazing how you turned my favorite fruit (pears) into something so interesting and delicious, I wished I could take a bite from your plate now:p

  2. I love poached pears, this recipe makes a perfect holiday side dish as well. I bet it taste fantastic with champagne! Great article!

  3. Christy: Wow! thanks. It really was tasty and perfect for chilly weather…

    Melanie: yes and yes! so yum for now and every day.

    Mercedes: sure is. healthy for the most part!

    Eliana: sexy is the right word… goes down so smooth. ooh wee!!

  4. I completely understand what you mean about not eating, seeing or cooking with pears as a Cubana, but dang, they are so yummy! I guess if we ran into each other at the grocery store, we would be the only two Latinos stocked up with Bosc pears in our carts 😉 Beautiful recipe! Can’t wait to try it!

  5. Sounds perfect Bren. Love the warm rich colors.
    Now, could you light it on fire tableside?
    P.S. Cream cheese is a brilliant pairing!

  6. Vanessa: imaginate! dos cubanas comprando cositas que no tienen nada que ver con nuestra cocina. pero eso es al beauty of cooking! I love it! I came to love pears when I was a little girl…. So good!

    Joscelyn: Thanks mujer! I clearly enjoy doing what I do! Feliz Navidad to you, too! hugs.

    Laurita: Ay, gracias amiga…

    Karma-Free Cooking: yes it does… we had it with cream cheese the 2nd night.. perfecto.

    Sugar Free Recipes: Hmmm. Good question… do you any sugar alternatives? I’d be curious to try it that way myself.

    LoryLynn: Yes! I totally could have lit it at the table but there were too many greedy and anxious kids at the table so we went the good ol’ traditional, safe way. The cream cheese was a nice surprise.

  7. les aconsejo que lo hagan para las fiestas de holiday .quedaron riquisimas,el sabor, la textura, etc… todo perfecto. muy rico las peras. deliciosas y ese toque con la piña con ginger! que mas les digo. tratenlo y comenselo luego.

  8. I love the idea that Lori suggested. Tht sounds so perfect and sexy. Definitely a great dessert to have ready made for your guests and inline the simple nature of it. Happy holidays.

  9. Someone left your site open at the Apple store in Atlanta and I love it. Not sure why someone would leave it open, but I’m glad I came across it! I’ll have to browse around when I get home. Been bookmarked. Great pear recipe. You sound like an interesting person and your passion comes through in your writing… Happy holidays. Some guy at Apple store.

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