Poached pears with red winePosted: Updated:
4 small firm but ripe Anjou pears, peeled
3 1/2 cups red wine 1-liter bottle
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cinnamon stick, broken in half
1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
Using melon baller, remove core from bottom end of pears. Combine wine, sugar and cinnamon stick in large pot. Scrape in seeds from vanilla bean; add bean. Bring to simmer. Add pears (liquid should cover pears halfway). Reduce heat to medium-low; cook until pears are tender, about 10 minutes, turning pears halfway through. Transfer pears and cooking liquid to large bowl. Cool completely.
Drain poaching liquid back into pot. Boil until sauce thickens and is reduced to 2 cups, stirring occasionally, about 12 minutes. Cool sauce to room temperature. (Pears and sauce can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover separately and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before serving.)
Spoon sauce into 6 shallow bowls. Place pears atop sauce. Garnish with mint and serve.