Saffron-spiced poached pears with Gorgonzola walnuts

March 11, 2013 (Last Updated: January 11, 2019)
Saffron-spiced poached pears with Gorgonzola walnuts recipe

Saffron-spiced poached pears with Gorgonzola walnuts are delicately dreamy. The lightness of the pears is delicious with creamy, rich cheese and slight spices. Amazing hot or cold! 

Saffron-spiced poached pears with Gorgonzola walnuts

Serves: 6
Cooking Time: 45 mins


  • 6 small pears, peeled, stalks intact
  • 200g walnuts
  • 250g Gorgonzola, to serve
  • Syrup

  • 500g castor sugar
  • 250ml (1 cup) water
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • peel of 1 lemon
  • 3 cloves
  • 2 star anise
  • 1 cardamom pod
  • 1 vanilla pod, split lengthways
  • a pinch of saffron
  • 5cm fresh ginger, sliced



Preheat the oven to 180°C.


Place all of the syrup ingredients in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium. Cook the syrup until the sugar has dissolved and the syrup is fairly thick, 10 – 12 minutes.


Add the pears to the syrup and poach over medium heat until just tender, 6 – 10 minutes (be careful not to overcook them; they must keep their shape).


When cooked, remove the pears from the heat and cool.


Line a baking tray with baking paper and add the walnuts. Spoon 30 – 45ml (2 – 3 tbsp) of pear syrup over the walnuts. Bake until slightly caramelised, about 15 minutes. Remove and set aside to cool.


To serve, place a pear in a serving bowl, scatter with candied walnuts and add sliced Gorgonzola. Drizzle 15 – 30ml (1 – 2 tbsp) of syrup over each pear.


Cook's tip: These are delicious served cold. Pair with a strong soft cheese of your choice. A blue cheese variety works very well.


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