Pears in Red Wine with a Fresh Cheese Filling
Pears: Peel the pears and core them whole using a melon baller to scoop out the pulp from the bottom. In a large saucepan, place the wine, sugar, cinnamon sticks and orange peel and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down to low and add the pears. Simmer them for about 30 minutes until fork tender. Baste the pears occasionally to make sure they absorb the wine evenly. Remove the pears from the poaching liquid, remove the cinnamon stick and reduce the liquid to 1 cup. Set it aside to cool.
Filling: Place the cream cheese, sugar and brandy in a food processor and blend. Transfer it to a bowl and fold in the whipped cream. Place it in a pastry bag with a plain tip and fill the pears. Place them in a shallow serving bowl and pour the reduced liquid over them. Chill.
Sauce: Puree the strawberries with the sugar and chill. To serve the dish, cover the pears with the strawberry puree.
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