- 4 William pears, free from blemishes and bruises
- Lemon juice
- 2 cups sugar
- 6 cups water
- Vanilla bean, split, seeded
- Peel each pear from stem down. Sprinkle each pear with lemon juice to avoid browning while peeling the remaining pears.
- Place 2 cups sugar and 6 cups water in a saucepan over medium heat and stir until sugar has dissolved. Increase heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Add pears and a split, seeded vanilla bean. Cover pears with a square of baking paper. Allow the pears to simmer in the liquid for 15-20 minutes or until tender, turning occasionally to ensure even cooking.
- Serve pear warm or cooled with a little poaching liquid.
Hard as a rock? To ripen your hard pears, put fruit in a punctured paper bag and keep them at room temperature. When they have ripened, they will smell delicious and will give a little when you press with your thumb.