Tequila-Poached Pears with Chili-Chocolate Sauce



15 min


45 min



Tequila-Poached Pears with Chili-Chocolate Sauce

Produced by Stephanie Han Kim; Photography by Christie Vuong; Food Styling by Matthew Kimura; Prop Styling by Christine Hanlon.

Spoonably soft fruit and a velvety chocolate sauce get spiked with tequila and cayenne. Poach pears ahead of time for a quick dessert or skip the sauce and use a drinking chocolate mix instead, which is thicker than typical hot chocolate. Soma and ChocoSol make great Canadian options. —Chantal Braganza


  • 2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup agave nectar
  • 1/4 cup white tequila
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 strips orange peel
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 2 firm Bosc pears , peeled, halved and cored

Chocolate Sauce

  • 1/2 cup 36% cream
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • Crushed pecans , optional


  1. Combine first six ingredients in a medium saucepan. Add pear halves. Cut a circular piece of parchment (slightly smaller in diameter than the saucepan) and place over pears to keep them submerged as they cook.
  2. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-high, keeping at a simmer until pears are easily pierced with a knife, 15 to 20 min. Set aside to cool.
  3. Remove cinnamon, orange peel and cloves. Store pears and liquid together in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  4. Before serving, remove pears from liquid and arrange in serving dishes. Boil liquid, reducing until about 1 ½ cups remain, 8 to 10 min. Remove from heat and whisk in cream, cocoa powder and cayenne. Slowly stir in chocolate chips, letting residual heat melt chocolate into a sauce. Set aside until slightly thickened, 5 min. Spoon sauce over pears; garnish with pecans if desired.

Kitchen tip

For a prettier presentation, slice a piece off the bottom of the pear halves to stand each upright.