Aniseed is used widely in Chinese cooking, both entrees and in desserts, adding a sweet, licorice-like flavor to foods. Any variety of firm, ripe pears can be used in this refreshing dish, but you may have to adjust the cooking time according to the texture and ripeness of the pears.
- In a saucepan, combine water, sugar, lemon juice, and aniseed. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Add pears.
- When water returns to a boil, reduce heat slightly, cover saucepan, and simmer until pears are just tender, about 6 to 10 minutes.
- Cool slightly, then place in a shallow bowl and chill.