Maple Bourbon Poached Pear with Vanilla Bean Mascarpone

This is one of those desserts that can feed a bunch of people with little fuss. It can also pass as something a little more upscale for your fancier guests.


For the Poaching Liquid:

6 Bosc Pears, ripe but still firm

Juice of 1 Lemon

1 cup Bourbon

1 cup Pure Maple Syrup

2 Cinnamon Sticks

1/4 cup Brown Sugar

Pinch of Salt

1 tsp Vanilla Paste

2 cup Water

For the Vanilla Bean Mascarpone

1 tub EMMA Mascarpone Cheese, room temperature

1 tsp Vanilla Paste

1/2 cup Powdered Sugar

1/2 cup Full Fat Sour Cream, room temperature


  1. Wash and peel the pears, slice them vertically down the middle and cut out the core using a melon baller. Keep them submerged under water and lemon juice to prevent them from browning.

  2. In a medium sized stock pot, add the bourbon, maple syrup, cinnamon sticks, brown sugar, salt, vanilla paste, and water. Bring to a quick boil on medium high heat to dissolve the salt and the sugar. Taking care to not bring too close to an open flame (if you’re using a gas stove), as the bourbon may catch fire. This is normal, the alcohol will burn off and you’ll be able to continue with the recipe.

  3. Drain the pears from the lemon water and place them in the pot, submerging them under the poaching liquid. Turn the heat down to low, making sure the liquid moves no faster than a slow simmer. Cook the pears until soft enough to pierce with a fork, about 10-15 minutes. They should still be firm enough to hold their shape without falling apart. Remove each pear with a slotted spoon to a waiting cooling rack. Reduce the poaching liquid until syrupy. Set it aside while you prepare the Mascarpone cream.

  4. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the mascarpone and beat on low until smooth. Scrape down the edges and add the vanilla paste and the powdered sugar, beat on low again until incorporated. Slowly fold in the sour cream with a spatula until well blended.

  5. Before serving, toss the pears back in the poaching liquid over low heat until warmed up. Serve with a dollop of the mascarpone mixture and a drizzle of the poaching syrup.


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