Served as a delicate treat for Royalty around the world, the poached pear has become more mainstream now that we have discovered the potential of this amazing fruit. Pears are kin to both the apple and rose plants and contain 11% of your daily vitamin C when eaten raw. The ripeness of the pears used in this recipe determines how long they will take to poach.
In a medium saucepan over high heat, bring Chardonnay to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until the wine is reduced by half. Add the brown sugar, stirring gently, until the sugar has completely dissolved. Stir in the cream, increase heat to high and bring to a boil again. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat, allow to cool completely and whisk in the condensed milk. Set aside and keep warm until needed. Chardonnay caramel sauce will keep, covered and refrigerated, for about 5 days.
Preheat grill to medium-high heat, leaving one side of the grill turned off.
Squeeze juice of the three blood oranges (or tangerines) into a small bowl, mix with ½ cup Chardonnay and set aside. Meanwhile, cut top and bottom off the three remaining blood oranges, cut each orange in half (you should have 6 orange wheels) and set aside. Peel pears and slice a small section off the bottom of each pear so that they sit upright. Set aside.
Place 2 sheets of foil (one on top of the other) on a flat surface. Place one blood orange wheel in the center of foil, top with 1 tbsp. of brown sugar, then stand a pear upright on top of the sugar. Drizzle the pear with about 1 tbsp. of the wine and orange juice mixture, then sprinkle with coarsely ground black pepper. Draw the corners of the foil square up to the center, insert a small cinnamon stick into the bundle with the pear, and crimp foil tightly to form a bundle. Repeat for all remaining pears.
Place the bundles on the unheated side of grill, close the lid and grill roast for 30 to 45 minutes or until the pears are tender.
Remove bundles from the grill, allow to rest for 1-2 minutes and open very carefully as there will be a lot of steam. Remove pear from foil and place the ‘poached’ orange slice into the center of serving plate. To slice the pear, starting just below the stem, make ½” deep slits vertically down the pear, about ¼” apart. Place pear back onto orange slice, drizzle with the Chardonnay caramel sauce and garnish with a sprig of fresh mint. Repeat with remaining pears.