Ease of preparation
- 1 x 750 ml bottle Zinfandel wine or other red wine
- 1 cup (240 ml) honey
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 teaspoon (5 ml) whole cloves
- 2 star anise
- 3 Bartlett pears, peeled with stems intact
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) lemon juice
- 2 ½ cups (600 ml) flour
- 1 teaspoon (5 ml) baking soda
- 2 teaspoons (10 ml) baking powder
- ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) salt
- ½ cup (120 ml) brown sugar
- ½ cup (120 ml) olive oil
- 2 eggs
- 2/3 cup (160 ml) molasses
- ½ cup (120 ml) milk
To make poached pears
- Add wine, honey, cinnamon, cloves, and star anise to a saucepan. Heat on medium, stirring, until it starts to simmer.
- Add pears and bring to a low boil. Reduce heat and simmer 30 minutes, or until pears are tender but not mushy.
- Remove pears from saucepan using a slotted spoon and let cool.
- Boil poaching liquid until it reduces to a thick syrup. Remove from heat. Add lemon juice and stir in.
To make loaf
- Mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together brown sugar, olive oil, and eggs. Add molasses and milk and mix in.
- Make a well in the middle of the flour mixture and slowly pour in molasses mixture, then stir to combine.
- Preheat oven to 350 F (175 C).
- Pour loaf mixture into a greased loaf pan to 2/3 full. Press a pear into the mixture stem-side up. Distribute the other 2 pears evenly through the loaf. Bake for 30 minutes.
- Remove from oven and cover top of loaf pan with foil. Bake a further 20-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the centre comes out clean.
- Heat the poaching syrup. Cut loaf into slices. Plate slices and pour syrup over top.