"This is one of my favorite desserts, especially during the holidays," says Madeline Dow, marketing director for the Washington Wine Commission and this week's Grillaxin target focus. The 28-year-old unabashedly dropped names of restaurants that could use a dose of Washington wine on their menu, to the enjoyment of readers who found her candidness refreshing, and to the ire of others who took her honesty as an unnecessary jab at our local food scene.
But Dow is also frank about how her name has helped her career: "Growing up in the restaurant industry with my dad and with my last name has been fun--getting to know the key restaurant players. I'm passionate about new restaurants. I love the restaurant scene. I think I would want to be a restaurant critic if I ever had to do something different."
Today, Dow is trading her glass of wine for a plate of it (sort of) as she shares with us one of her dad's recipes from back when he owned Cafe Juanita. After 25 years, Peter Dow no longer runs the beloved Eastside restaurant, but he owns a winery and he still loves to cook. This recipe showcases both of those passions. "My mom has perfected this recipe, so she deserves a shout-out. What could be better than pears, red wine, and cream?"
Peter Dow's recipe for boozy baked pears . . . after the jump!
6 pears - preferably ripe but firm (i.e. Bosc). Stems on, unpeeled
18 whole cloves
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup red wine
1/2 tsp ground cloves
Heavy cream--either plain, whipped, or mascarpone
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Stick three cloves in each pear.
3. In a saucepan over low heat, dissolve the sugar in the red wine. Add a 1/2 tsp of ground cloves.
4. Place the pears in a shallow baking dish and pour the wine mixture over them.
5. Place in the oven and bake for about 40 minutes, basting the pears with the wine several times. Continue until the sauce is reduced to a syrup consistency.
6. Remove from oven and cool slightly.
7. Place each pear on a plate or shallow bowl and ladle the syrup over the top. Add a tablespoon of the cream over each or mascarpone on the side of the pears.