Honey and Sage Poached Pears

We always think of sage as a flavouring for savoury dishes, but its warm, spicy fragrance can also enhance sweet dishes, particularly fruits.


  • 4 even-sized pears
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1–2 small sprigs of sage
  • fresh sage leaves, to decorate


Peel the pears, and cut a thin slice from the base of each so that they will stand upright in a heavy saucepan. Trickle the honey over the pears, and add the water and the sage sprigs. Bring to the boil, cover and simmer gently for 15 minutes. Remove the pears, and place them in individual bowls. Reduce the liquid until syrupy, and pour a little over each pear. Decorate with fresh sage leaves. Chill and serve.


Use sprigs of rosemary instead of sage.

Use 3 tablespoons of honey and only 1 tablespoon of water, and omit the sage. After removing the fruit, boil the syrup until it caramelizes, and then stir in ¼ pt / 140 ml double cream and cook for another few minutes. Pour this over the pears, and serve.