This is an recipe i used to cook At the Orinoco ON barge dtreet in kent. Halve the vanilla pods lengthways, scrape out the black seeds and put in a large saucepan with the wine, snagria, cinnamon and thyme. Cut each piece of pod into three long thin strips, add to pan, then lower in the pears. Poach the pears, covered, for 20-30 mins, making sure they are covered in the wine. The cooking time will very much depend on the ripeness of your pears - they should be tender all the way through when pierced with a cocktail stick. You can make these up to 2 days ahead and chill. Take the pears from the pan, then boil the liquid to reduce it by half so that it's syrupy. Serve each pear with the cooled syrup, a strip of vanilla, a piece of cinnamon and a small thyme sprig. 4 vanilla pods 1 75cl bottle sangria 500g caster sugar 1/2 cinnamon stick , halved fresh thyme sprig , plus sprigs to seve 2 pears , peeled, but kept whole with stalk intact Serves 2.