Our recipe calls for the pears to be halved, not served whole, which makes them easier to eat. It also makes them perfect for serving over ice cream or Greek yogurt (or with cottage cheese for breakfast). Reserve any poaching liquid for a flavorful addition to cocktails or iced tea, or mix it into hot cereal.
Use ripe, but not soft (or overly ripe) pears in this recipe so that they maintain their shape while cooking. Did you know that pears are not supposed ripen on the tree? That’s why they are hard when you purchase them. For tips on how to best ripen pears, and how to tell when a pear is ripe, here are some tips from USA Pears (not a client, just good info).
I’ve been experimenting with using coconut sugar in recipes, and so I used a mixture of coconut sugar and granulated sugar in this recipe, which lent the pears a nice color, but using all granulated sugar is perfectly fine. Feel free to adjust the spices to your taste. I happen to love the spiciness of cloves, but f you prefer more vanilla flavor and less cloves, alter accordingly.