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All four of the chai spices—cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, and black pepper—promote
good health and improve digestion; in addition, they bring a sense of warmth and
comfort. Fragrant, exotic, and exquisitely delicious, they are the perfect match for these
classic poached pears, which can be enjoyed as a light breakfast, afternoon snack, and, of
course, dessert.

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients
2 cinnamon sticks
1 (2-inch) piece fresh ginger, crushed with a knife to crack the skin
20 cardamom pods, cracked
24 black peppercorns
4 firm but ripe medium-sized pears

In a pot large enough to hold the 4 pears, combine 10 cups water with the cinnamon sticks, ginger, cardamom, and peppercorns. Bring the water to a rolling boil, reduce the heat to maintain a simmer, cover, and continue simmering for 20 minutes to infuse the water with the spices.

Wash the pears and cut them in half, leaving the peels on and cores and stems intact. Add the pears to the spice-infused water, cover the pot, and simmer until they are poached. They should be tender enough that a knife easily pierces them but they still hold their shape; this can take from 45 minutes to 2 hours. The duration varies depending on the variety of the pears and the ripeness of the fruit. Let sit in the poaching liquid, with the lid on the pot, for about 30 minutes until the pears are cool enough to serve. As the pears steep, the chai-spiced liquid will continue to infuse the fruit.

To serve, plate two pear halves per person. Spoon some of the poaching liquid over the pears.

Each serving 104 calories (kcal) • 0 g fat • 0 mg cholesterol
28 g carbohydrates • 6 g dietary fiber • 1 g protein • 2 mg sodium
51 IU vitamin A • 8 mg vitamin C • 19 mg calcium • trace iron

Cook’s Tip The chai-spiced poaching liquid becomes a warming beverage when strained and served in a teacup. It’s also refreshing served over ice in a tall glass with a cinnamon stick.

Recipe courtesy of The Ranch at Live Oak’s first cookbook. You can now take the experience of the beloved spa home for only $35.

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