• This dessert is perfect for cooler weather.

    Recipe and styling by Nomvuselelo Mncube

    Photograph by Dylan Swart

    Rooibos and red wine-poached pears with lemongrass custard

    Serves: 8 - 10
    Total Time: 1 hr


    • 5 Rooibos teabags
    • 1L boiling water
    • 750ml (3 cups) red wine
    • 250g sugar
    • 3 whole star anise
    • 3 cinnamon quills
    • 5 pears

    • 500ml (2 cups) milk
    • 2 lemongrass sticks, crushed
    • 1 vanilla pod, split
    • 3 egg yolks
    • 100g castor sugar
    • 10ml (2 tsp) cornflour
    • 50g raw pistachio nuts, chopped



    In a large pot placed over medium-high heat, place the teabags, boiling water, wine, sugar and spices. Boil for 10 minutes. Reduce the heat to a simmer, add the pears and allow to simmer for 30 minutes or until the pears are tender.


    For the custard, in a separate pot over medium-high heat, place the milk, lemongrass and vanilla pod. When the milk is just boiling, remove the pot from the stove and let it stand for 5 minutes for the flavours to infuse.


    Using a free-standing mixer or hand-held electric beater, combine the egg yolks, castor sugar and cornflour for 2 minutes or until a pale, smooth paste is achieved. Strain the milk mixture, discarding the lemongrass and vanilla pod, and pour the milk over the egg yolk mixture, stirring constantly. Transfer the mixture to a clean saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring constantly. Cook gently until the custard thickens, about 15 minutes.


    Serve the pears sprinkled with chopped pistachio nuts and the warm custard alongside.

    Imka Webb

    Imka Webb is a freelance digital marketing expert and the digital editor of Food & Home Entertaining magazine.  www.imkawebb.com