Jewish Journal

Mulled Spiced Pears [Recipe]

by Elana Horwich

December 23, 2013 | 9:00 am

Making desserts has gotten a bad rap. We are convinced it will be a lengthy process that requires flour getting all over the kitchen and some type of custard that requires needle-point precision. But who cares about that when desserts scream out the “f-word” -fattening- so loud we’re too scared to admit we even want some.

Let me set you straight with a piece of truth that has consistently prevailed throughout my diverse anthropological studies of cultures from the ancient Aztecs and Sumerians to the modern Jewish housewives of Beverly Hills: HUMANS WANT DESSERT. So stop pretending and let yourself have what you want.

Sweets don’t have to make a mess, be made only by the annoyingly retentive or be fattening. So often people make dinner but buy dessert. These mulled spiced pears are yummy in a way that a dessert bought at a patisserie never could be. And as for a dessert that will not “F-Word” you up, forgettaboutit. You’re gonna have to make it yourself.

Go ahead, it’s so easy.

Serves 4-6.


  • 4-5 pears, un-peeled, cored, and cut into 1 inch pieces
  • a handful of dried apricots or peaches- roughly chopped into ¼ - ½  inch pieces
  • a handful of pitted prunes- roughly chopped into ¼ - ½ inch pieces
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • about 6 whole cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 cup wine - red, white or a combo of both*

*White wine will make for a lighter dessert, red wine will add great color. I love to mix both. Use what you have open.

  1. Place all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium high heat.
  2. Lower heat, cover and simmer for a good half hour or until pears are nice and soft.
  3. Top with ice cream and serve.
  4. Add a cinnamon stick to each dish for decorative flare if you wish.

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Elana Horwich is the founder of Meal and a Spiel, a boutique Beverly Hills cooking school and online recipe resource based on the philosophy that anyone can learn to cook. Her...

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