I’m lucky to be living in a house that has two fruit trees in the backyard, a pear and a plum. All summer long it’s been positively miraculous to see them growing from amusingly adorable miniatures (have you ever seen a tiny baby pear? As cute as a fruit can be) to real, bona fide, all-grown-up-fruit. The time has finally come and the pear tree is positively exploding with its bounty.
Though I also fantasized about poached pears in wine, frangipane tarts and fresh fruit salad, I knew months ago that what I wanted to make most was chutney. I thought cranberries would pair beautifully with the pears, underscoring the tangy, slightly sour tartness of a good chutney – I love how they hang in the balance between sweet and savory.
This makes 12 half pints – enough to enjoy for yourself AND save for holiday gifting action.
CRANBERRY PEAR CHUTNEY
4 pounds pears, cored and chopped fine (I left the peels on and it was totally fine)
4 cups cider vinegar
2 cups diced red onion (approximately 1 very large onion)
4 cloves garlic, minced
juice and zest of 2 lemons
2 cups brown sugar
1/4 cup honey
1 1/2 cups dried cranberries
i heaping tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon mustard seeds
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon salt
Combine all ingredients in a large pot. Bring first to a full rolling boil, then reduce heat to a lower, gentle boil and cook, stirring periodically, until mixture thickens and liquid has reduced to a spreadable consistency. This will take about 90n minutes to 2 hours.
During this time, you can sterilize the jars, lids and rings, and have them ready to go! When the chutney is ready, ladle into jars, wipe the rims, seal and process in a water bath for 15 minutes apiece. Once again, I’ll share the link to the great visual guide at Nourish, Preserve, and Flourish: check it out!
[Tip: DON’T forget that the jars still need to be processed before dumping out the hot water from sterilizing the jars. Ask me how I know . . .]
To be continued next week with . . . you guessed it! Plums.
Other tantalizing chutneys around food blog land:
Green Tomato Apple Chutney from David Lebovitz
Apple Blueberry Chutney from The Perfect Pantry
Plum Apple Chutney from Tea & Cookies
Homemade Mango Chutney from Simply Recipes
Roasted Lemon Chutney Recipe from 101 Cookbooks
— posted by Anne