A little of what you fancy in October’s kitchen!
We picked our fantastic crop of pears a couple of days ago – I lost count in the end but there’s a good couple of crates full. So of course now I’m busy preserving them in some shape or form. I’ve done a chutney with orange and ginger which is lovely but needs a good 4 months to mature. I put a mix of apples and pears in the slow cooker along with some dried cranberries overnight and it’s cooked down to a tasty compote which we’ll eat with some yoghurt or top with icecream.
But my favourite has to be this pear and chocolate jam – it’s not a healthy option but I say ‘a little of what you fancy!’
Pear and chocolate jam
Makes about 6 medium size jars and takes about an hour (most of which is peeling and chopping!)
1kg just ripe pears
Juice of 2 large lemons
Tbsp of water
800g granulated sugar
Good pinch of cinnamon
150g dark chocolate (mim70% cocoa solids)
Sterilised jars and lids
Plate in the freezer to test for set
- Chop the chocolate and put to one side ready to use
- Use a potato peeler to peel the pears then quarter them and take out the cores. Dice fairly small
- Tip into your preserving pan with a tablespoon of water and the lemon juice
- Heat gently then cook slowly for just 5 minutes, stirring often
- Turn the heat right down and add the sugar and the cinnamon. Stir until the sugar has dissolved then bring up to a boil and cook for 10-15 minutes.
- Turn the heat off and test for set using your frozen saucer- put a teaspoon of jam on the saucer and leave for a minute. Push your finger through the jam. If it wrinkles – it’s ready.
- You’re looking for a soft set – if it’s not ready turn up the heat and test after another 2 or 3 minutes.
- Keep the heat low and stirring constantly add the chocolate. Stir until it’s thoroughly melted.
- Pot up into warm jars and seal
This is scrumptious as an ice cream topping or to have with brioche or croissant for breakfast. Or as a topping for pancakes or waffles.