Poached Pears with Dulce de Leche Sauce

Poached Pears with Dulce de Leche Sauce

Two-in-one recipes are more fun when booze is involved. That is fact. In this recipe, we end up with bonus snifters of basic vino caliente, or South American mulled wine, to go with blushing red poached pears. Granted, there isn’t anything exclusively South American about the spiced wine component, but vino caliente sounds much cooler than “hot wine,” doesn’t it?

Once the pears are poached, some of the spiced wine is simmered down into a light and fruity syrup. The wine reduction keeps the richness of the dulce de leche sauce in check.

Warm dessert. Spiced wine. Winter will be over before you know it. For sunnier days, serve the pears with dulce de leche ice cream or make a granita out of the leftover vino.

recipe adapted from Maria Baez Kijac’s The South American Table

Peras con Salsa de Dulce de Leche
Poached Pears with Dulce de Leche Sauce

makes 4 generous servings

Poached Pears with Dulce de Leche Sauce in Pan

4 ripe but firm Anjou or Bartlett pears
walnuts or pecans, toasted and coarsely chopped for garnishing

For the Poaching Liquid:

1 1/2 cups dry red wine
1 1/2 cups water
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 cinnamon stick
a strip of zest from 1 lemon or lime

For the Dulce de Leche Sauce:

1/2 cup dulce de leche
1/2 cup light whipping cream
1 tablespoon rum or brandy (optional)


  • The poached pears, spiced wine syrup, and dulce de leche sauce can be made ahead of time. Reheat just before serving.


  1. Prepare the poaching liquid. In a medium saucepan over high heat, bring the red wine, water, sugar, cinnamon stick, and citrus zest to a boil.  Reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for about 5 minutes.
  2. While the poaching liquid simmers, prepare the pears. Peel, cut in half lengthwise, and core to remove the seeds.
  3. Add the pears to the poaching liquid. Cover and poach the pears for about 10 minutes, until tender but still firm. Transfer the pears to a large platter.
    Poached Pears with Dulce de Leche Sauce
  4. Remove all but 1 cup of the poaching liquid from the saucepan (reserve the excess wine and enjoy as a warm beverage). Simmer the remaining wine over medium heat until reduced by half and slightly thickened.
  5. Prepare the dulce de leche sauce. Heat the dulce de leche and cream over medium heat. Stir until smooth and continue cooking only until the sauce is heated through. Remove from the heat and stir in the rum or brandy (if using).
  6. Spoon a few tablespoons of the dulce de leche sauce on small serving plates. Slice the poached pears and set on top of the dulce de leche sauce. Spoon about 2 teaspoons of the spiced wine syrup over the pear slices and top with walnuts or pecans. Serve while still warm.

Poached Pears with Dulce de Leche Sauce Sliced

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64 Responses to “Poached Pears with Dulce de Leche Sauce”

  1. Susan at Sticky,Gooey,Creamy,Chewy says:

    This looks so lovely and elegant. Pears and dulce de leche are a wonderful flavor combination.

  2. Girl Japan says:

    It sure looks orgasmic but the photographs are beautiful!!!! I agree, Pears and dulce de leche are fab combos..

  3. Y says:

    Jude, what a stunning first photo and delicious sounding dish. That sauce looks so velvety!

  4. Jacque says:

    MMmmm, this looks wonderful! … I’m always looking for excuses to eat dulce de leche.

  5. Rosa says:

    A wonderful combination! What a delightful and refined dessert!



  6. rainbowbrown says:

    You said it. Things are more fun when booze is involved. That is what you said, no?

  7. Meeta says:

    heaven – pure heaven! i am unable to say more because i am salivating too much!

  8. Lorraine @NotQuiteNigella says:

    That looks divine, I think I would sit there admiring it for the longest time!

  9. Natashya says:

    Your dessert is so elegant, beautifully plated and beyond delicious! :) You are the master!

  10. Caitlin says:

    It’s fate. I already have all of the ingredients. That means I *have* to make it, right? And thank you for saying that winter will be over before we know it; it makes the -10 degree weather with -35 degree windchill seem not quite so bad.

  11. maryann says:

    Hi Jude! Yes, the booze adds a special little something, I agree :) I love dishes like this.

  12. Mike says:

    Dulce de leche combined with poached pears would have never crossed my mind, but I love the sound of it. I also really like the plating as you don’t typically see poached pears served this way (not to mention the photo itself, which looks excellent)

  13. kat says:

    Oh, what an interesting sounding dessert

  14. Tangled Noodle says:

    I’ve always wanted to make poached pears – I think this is the recipe I’ve been waiting for!

  15. Ben says:

    This is exactly what I need for the cold days ahead. Great recipe!

  16. Joelen says:

    Such an elegant presentation and dish!

  17. lisaiscooking says:

    Beautiful, and sounds delicious!

  18. grace says:

    i’m fairly certain that all recipes are more fun when booze is involved… :)
    and i know for a fact that all desserts are improved by a little dulce de leche…well, most of ‘em. :)

  19. Heather says:

    What pretty dessert. This is such a nice reflection of the cold weather (and I love that it doesn’t require baking).

  20. MyKitchenInHalfCups says:

    The cure for winter cold – I do love this!
    Seems like you must have a lot of pears on hand Jude, and you’re doing magic with them. Keep it going.

  21. snooky doodle says:

    these look so nice! I would have never thought of combining dulche de leche with wine :) great! I bet the taste is so goooood !!!!

  22. courtney says:

    My first vist. Gorgeous blog and photos. I love pears and enjoyed reading the past 2 posts.

  23. Hannah says:

    Such a beautiful presentation! That would certainly be an elegant final course to serve at any meal.

  24. Soma says:

    That looks just so perfect. & yes alcohol surely makes it taste better:-)

  25. Jackie says:

    What a classy dessert. I also like how you can prepare the components ahead of time – my only fear is that there might not be enough vino caliente or dulce de leche left by the time I need to assemble the dish. :P

  26. Dragon says:

    Now this is truly a work of art. So, so beautiful!

  27. Leela@SheSimmers says:

    As I was reading through the first part, I was thinking, wow, wine-poached pear and dulce de leche — what a great combination? Could a bit of rum make this even more interesting?

    Then I scrolled down and there it was, the suggestion on adding rum or brandy …

    Thanks a lot for sharing the recipe. I’ll definitely try it.

  28. Vera says:

    To die for, Jude! The first photo is absolutely gorgeous!

  29. noble pig says:

    Yes, vino caliente sounds much more exotic and grown up. As a winemaker, “hot wine” just doesn’t have that ring to it.

  30. giz says:

    This is what I call magnet food. It’s beautiful, it’s dreamy, you can taste it right from the picture – yup count me in.

  31. DD says:

    That photo doesn’t even look real it’s so breathtaking. Wow, nice work!

  32. Peter says:

    The aroma alone from poaching the pears wins me over. The home is filled with that warm smell.

    I’m going to try this…slicing the pears for that colour contrast.

  33. Gera says:

    Hi Jude!

    What can say absolutely incredible…You know that my weakness is dulce de leche ;) Always drooling with these sweet recipes!!

    Gera .:. sweetsfoods

  34. linda says:

    This looks so artistic, and did I mention delicious?

  35. The Duo Dishes says:

    Oh booze makes everything better! We’re ready for a slice!

  36. Elizabeth says:

    mmm mmm boozed up fruit! And that picture looks ethereal!

  37. Zu Murphy says:

    This poached pear is divine. I love dulche de leche. Sometimes I use it as a spread on my bread. Scrumptous!

  38. RecipeGirl says:

    Definitely not good for my diet, but I do love a good scoop of dulce in my more indulgent times!

  39. srilekha says:

    wow!its looks scrumptious!

  40. Pigpigscorner says:

    Oh my! Looks so pretty!! Love the colours and how the pears sit on a pool of creamy dulche de leche. Delicious!

  41. Hayley says:

    Thanks so much for stopping by my site. I’ve always loved yours, as your instructions are so precise. These pears look beautiful, and so tasty!

  42. Shari says:

    That dulce de leche sauce sounds wonderful, especially with poached pears!

  43. Mandy says:

    Seeing the beautifully poached pears, I can forget about the subzero temperature we are having for awhile. :)

  44. Hillary says:

    I have a feeling I would LOVE this because I am obsessed with this poached pear and caramel sauce dessert I had once at Kiki’s Bistro.

  45. Alexa says:

    This is my type of recipe, Jude… I love baked pears and add the caramel sauce–wow! I will bookmark this wonderful dessert. Thank You!

  46. Dee says:

    Every thing’s more fun with booze :) I love how sophisticated this looks, and I can bet it tastes fantastic (I have a huge crush on dulce le leche!).

  47. Marc @ NoRecipes says:

    Sounds great. I’ve been on a pomegranate kick lately and have been poaching them in pomegranate juice, but after 3 consecutive batches, it’s getting old. I’m making this next time:-) Thanks for the idea!

  48. Kevin says:

    That looks so good!

  49. CookiePie says:

    That looks amazing!!

  50. Jo says:

    so beautiful! and so delicious looking. Can I come to your place for dinner? Hehe :) you are an excellent cook and photographer!

  51. we are never full says:

    i don’t know how this could be any more beautiful and simple. This would be the perfect ending to a fabulous dinner party. Not too heavy and just sweet enough.

  52. sweetbird says:

    You, sir, are going to make me fat with recipes like this…

  53. Nicisme says:

    Beautiful presentation, and gorgeous photos!

  54. noobcook says:

    use of red wine in this dessert is absolutely heavenly =D

  55. debinHawaii says:

    What a beautiful dessert! I love that sauce and pears and caramel are the perfect combo.

  56. The PurpleFoodie says:

    Jude, this looks so good! I especially love the pic where the pear and spices are immersed in the pot of wine. Lovely!

  57. Eileen says:

    Beautiful presentation. I just love pear desserts, especially this time of the year.

  58. PG says:

    as someone here said, you are doing magic with the pears! beautiful! When I plan to make dulche de leche I knw wher to go now. :) Lovely!

  59. Thanks for dropping by guys!
    Just realized that I sound like a chronic alcoholic in this post. Just be yourself, I guess.

  60. Memoria says:

    Wow! I agree with the others. This is a work of art! Beautiful pictures!

  61. Pear Dulce De Leche Pie « Bon Vivant says:

    [...] I trawled the Internet for inspiration, stopping in my tracks when I saw Jude’s recipe for Poached Pears with Dulce de Leche sauce at Apple Pie, Patis and [...]

  62. Pear Dulce De Leche Pie | Beyond [the Plate] says:

    [...] I trawled the Internet for inspiration, stopping in my tracks when I saw Jude’s recipe for Poached Pears with Dulce de Leche sauce at Apple Pie, Patis and [...]

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