Fresh pears are at the peak this time of year, and this simple dessert of pressure cooker cinnamon poached pears with chocolate sauce is an elegant way to take advantage of the flavorful bell-shaped seasonal fruit.
Hi there. I’m Letty from Letty’s Kitchen, the blog about seasonal vegetarian cooking and desserts with a healthier twist. I’m delighted to share this pressure cooker recipe with you, especially because easy to make healthy desserts like this make me happy.
Bittersweet chocolate sauce draping over perfectly poached citrus and cinnamon scented pears—well, yum! Pears, quickly poached in the pressure cooker, well, hello, welcome to our busy lives.
Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “There are only 10 minutes in the life of a pear when it is perfect to eat.” That goes for poaching too— perfect ripeness of pears is important for perfectly poached pears.
This means pears should definitely not be mushy, but they also should not be rock hard. For pressure cooker poached pears, aim to catch them when they are still quite firm, yet ripe, with color just beginning to change from green to yellow.
Did you know that farmers pick pears when unripe –that pears don’t ripen well on the tree? Under your watchful eyes let them ripen at home, and they’re ready when you want to make this recipe.
Cinnamon poached pears with chocolate sauce is proof of how well chocolate and pears go hand in hand. With a dairy-free dark chocolate sauce that takes 10 minutes to make, and sweet fragrant tender pears that poach under pressure in 4 minutes—people, we have a winner–you’ll be hearing wows of delight when you serve these for dessert.
Pressure Cooker Cinnamon Poached Pears with Chocolate Sauce notes:
- You can use Bosc or D’Anjou pears instead of Bartletts, just make sure they are in their heyday of ripeness, which is harder to narrow down because both of those varieties are more firm when ripe. Look for a bit of softness at the stem end.
- With a small box of Bartlett pears from the farmer’s market, I experimented with the timing of ripeness and pressure cooking. In my stovetop pressure cooker, 3 minutes at pressure with quick release resulted in tender poached pears that you could pierce with a fork, and not be mushy.
- I tried poaching unripe pears, but even at 4 minutes pressure they came out hard. And poached ripe pears taste better; their fragrant sweetness was missing in the unripe hard pears.
- Make ahead: When the syrup cools, slide the pears back in the liquid, cover and refrigerate. The pears will keep up to 5 days in the poaching liquid, with the cinnamon flavor getting stronger each day.
Pressure Cooker Cinnamon Poached Pears with Chocolate Sauce
- 1 lemon, cut in half
- 3 cups water
- 2 cups white wine
- 2 cups organic cane sugar
- 6 cinnamon sticks
- 6 Bartlett pears, ripe, but firm
- 9 ounces bittersweet chocolate cut in 1/2-inch pieces (I used Trader Joe’s 72% dark)
- 1/2 cup coconut milk
- ¼ cup coconut oil
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup or honey
Put the water, wine, sugar, and cinnamon sticks in the pressure cooking pot. Select Saute and bring to a simmer, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Switch to the Keep Warm setting so the liquid stays hot until the pears are peeled and ready.
Peel the pears, keeping them whole, with the stems intact. Rub them immediately with the cut lemon to keep from turning brown. Squeeze the remaining lemon juice into the wine/sugar syrup and drop the juiced lemon into the syrup.
Slip the pears into the hot syrup, lock the lid and bring to high pressure for 3 minutes. Quick release the pressure.
Carefully remove the pears with a slotted spoon and let cool. When the syrup has cooled a bit, pour it over the pears.
To make the Chocolate Sauce, place the chocolate in a bowl. In a small saucepan, over medium flame, heat the coconut milk, coconut oil, and maple syrup just to the boil. Pour it over chocolate and let sit a minute. Whisk until smooth. Keep warm until you serve the pears.
To serve, slice a little piece off the bottom of each pear and so they will stand up.
Place each pear on a plate and pour the warm chocolate sauce over.
Visit Letty’s Kitchen for more great pressure cooking recipes.