Poach the pears:
In a medium non-corrosive saucepan combine the water, sugar,lemon slices and vanilla bean.
Peel the pears and using a small scoop or teaspoon, carefullyscoop out the bloom end and the core of the pear. Place the pearimmediately into the water/sugar mixture to prevent browning.
Repeat with the remaining pears.
Bring the pears to a boil over medium-high heat, while stirringgently. Reduce the heat to low. Cover the pears with a clean dishtowel to keep the pears submerged. Simmer for about 20 minutesor until the pears are tender when pierced with a paring knife.
Remove the pears and syrup to a medium bowl and cool completely.
Refrigerate until well chilled.
Make the rice cakes:
Heat a medium noncorrosive saucepan over medium high heat.
Add the nuts and stir for 1 1/2 minutes to toast the nuts. Add themilk, rice, sugar and salt and bring to a boil, stirring occasionallyReduce the heat to low, cover and simmer gently, stirring often,for 35 to 40 minutes or until the rice is very soft and absorbsall of the milk. The rice will be very sticky. Stir often duringthe last 10 minutes of cooking, so the rice doesn't burn.
When the rice is cooked, transfer to a medium bowl and stirin the diced fruits and vanilla. Set the bowl in a larger bowl filledwith ice water to cool.
When the rice is cool, divide the mixture into 6 balls . Placethe rice balls on a platter, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerateuntil well chilled and ready to serve.
Make the raspberry sauce:
In a medium noncorrosive saucepan, combine the raspberriesand sugar. Cook over medium-low-heat, stirring constantly witha wooden spoon, until the sugar dissolves and the berries soften.
Remove the pan from the heat. Strain the raspberry mixture througha fine sieve into a bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap andrefrigerate the sauce.
Assemble the dessert:
Flatten one of the chilled rice balls to a patty that is 1 inchhigh. Place in the center of a plate and set one of the poachedpears on top of the rice patty. Spoon 2 to 3 tablespoons of thesauce around the plate. Repeat with the remaining rice pattiesand poached pears.
PREPARATI0N: 2 hours, plus cooling tim