My hope in starting this blog was that it would inspire (slash force) myself to cook more often and I am happy to say that this, in combination with launching my new catering business has put me in the kitchen for more hours than I am out of it. I couldn't be more pleased. They say practice makes perfect and though I am thousands of hours away from perfect, I am finding it easier to improvise and explore instead of simply imitating. This is an exciting step for me - to reach for The Flavor Bible when planning dinner instead of a measured out recipe. As I gain confidence and repertoire I am also seeking a bit of the unknown and canning is what I chose to tackle this week.
I started off slow with a simple fruit butter. It can be made with pears, apples, peaches... etc. I was excited by the flexibility I had to play with flavor pairings. I picked out a few spices and got rolling.
- 8 pears
- 1 cup honey
- ground cloves
- lemon to taste if needed
This recipe is best made on a lazy Sunday as it really takes very little effort but substantial time to cook down.
Slice pears into cubes and place into a thick bottomed pot. Add water to coat the bottom of the pot in about and inch of water. Heat on stove top until pear cubes are soft. In a cuisinart or with an immersion blender, blend pears and water until smooth. Return to heat and add honey, cinnamon, allspice and cloves to taste. I used a little less than a teaspoon of each. Boil the liquid down for about 3 hours, stirring occasionally. Taste. Adjust flavors. If needed, add a squeeze of lemon juice for tartness. When thick, let cool and can.