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Tea-Poached Pears

Yield: Serves 4 - 1 pear each.



4 pears, peeled, cored and cut in half
2 cups water
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
2 chamomile or green tea bags
1-1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon cold water
1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract

Bring the water, sugar and lemon juice to a boil in a deep saucepan.

Add the pears and tea bags and poach until the pears are tender, about 12 minutes. Turn the pears with a spoon to ensure even cooking.

Transfer pears to a plate; discard tea bags.

Simmer the liquid until reduced to 1 cup. Dissolve the cornstarch in the cold water and stir it into the simmering liquid; it will thicken; strain, add vanilla extract and let cool. Spoon sauce over each pear.