Fall is the season for pears & apples

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Did you know Real Canadian Superstore carries 40% locally grown produce? Fall is apple and pear harvest season. My favorite local apples are Ambrosia & Honeycrisp. The first Ambrosia apple tree was discovered in British Columbia in the early 1990s. Ambrosia is crispy & sweet and slow to turn brown which is perfect for salad, pie & baking. While Honeycrisp has a unique and distinctly crisp making it good for snacking.

There are 3 type of pears grown locally, Bosc, Anjou & Bartlett. Anjou is naturally sweet with a creamy texture. Bartlett is juicy and sweet with a fine grained, smooth texture. Bosc is firm and dense which is perfect for cooking.

I recently attended a Loblaws canning workshop hosted by Jackie Kai Ellis. Jackie is the owner of The Paris Tours & Beaucoup Bakery & Cafe serving delicious french pastries and desserts in Vancouver.

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Inspired by Korean cuisine, we learn how to make Spicy Pear Pickles. The spicy and smoky gochugaru adds a bite to the sweet and crunchy pear. You can eat it with soba noodles, on top of fried eggs and rice, in beef and lettuce wraps or in rice bowls.

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Spicy Pear Pickles
Serves: Makes about 10 x 220mL jars

– 14 local BC pears, peeled, cored and sliced into 1/8” inch slices
– 0.5 cup lemon juice
– 1-2 tbsp gochugaru (Korean red pepper flake) depending on how spicy you like it
– 2 cup daikon, small diced
– 2 tbsp sesame oil
– 2 tbsp minced ginger + 10 slices
– 3 green onion cut into 3” strips
– 10 cloves garlic
– 2 tbsp peppercorn
– 10 strips lemon peel
– 5 cups rice vinegar
– 1 cup mirin
– ½ cup fish sauce
– 0.3 cup salt
– 1.5 cup sugar

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Directions

1. Gently mix pears, gochugaru, lemon juice, daikon, sesame oil and minced ginger in a large bowl.

2. Place a few strips of green onion in sterilized jars and fill snugly with the pear mixture until they are about 1 to 1 ½” from the rim.

3. Boil the slices of ginger, garlic cloves peppercorns, lemon peel, vinegar, mirin, fish sauce, salt and sugar in a large pot until the sugar and salt are fully dissolved and the mixture is at a rolling boil.

4. Pour the vinegar mixture evenly into the jars so they cover the pears, making sure that one slice of ginger, one clove of garlic and one lemon peel are in each jar.

5. Cover the jars and refrigerate, allow ferment and eat within 2 weeks. The flavour will intensify as time passes so you can eat the pears immediately or after a week and a half to get more intensity.

6. Eat with Asian dishes like soba noodles, on top of fried eggs and rice, in beef and lettuce wraps or in rice bowls.

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Apple Butter is another easy recipe to follow and it’s great on toast and spread.

Cardamom Apple Butter
Serves: Makes about 10 x 220mL jars

Ingredients
– 12-13 local BC apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1” chunks. (Use sauce apples)
– 1 cup water
– Juice of 2 lemons
– Peels of 2 lemons, cut in strips and wrapped in cheesecloth
– 375g golden brown sugar
– 1 tsp salt
– 2 tsp cardamom
– 0.25 tsp allspice
– 0.25 tsp cloves
– 0.5 tsp nutmeg
– 1 tsp cinnamon
– 3 vanilla beans

Directions
1. Preheat oven to 300F.
2. Place all ingredients into a large, oven-safe pot and bring to boil.
3. Turn the heat down to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, until the apples break down into a sauce.
4. Turn off the heat and place the entire pot, uncovered into the oven to cook down for about 4-5 hours, or until the applesauce is thick and dark.
5. Remove from the oven and blend using an immersion blender until very smooth.
6. Place the mixture into sterilized jars and can the jars to hold in a pantry.
7. Freeze as a freezer jam for up to 3 months or refrigerate and eat within 2 weeks.

Cranberry Pear Chutney
Serves: Makes about 10 x 220mL jars

Ingredients
– 2 tbsp cup olive oil
– 225g shallots
– 10g thyme sprigs, tied with twine
– 1 tsp pepper
– 2 tsp salt
– 250mL balsamic vinegar
– 3 cups brown sugar
– 1.3kg fresh cranberries
– 5 pears cut into ½” cubes

Direction
1. Add oil, shallots, thyme, salt and pepper in a large, heavy bottom pot on medium heat.
2. Sautee until the shallots are softened slightly.
3. Add the vinegar, sugar and cranberries and bring to a boil.
4. Cook until about ½ of the cranberries are popped and become sauce-like.
5. Add the pears and bring to a boil.
6. Place the mixture into sterilized jars and can the jars to hold in a pantry.
7. Freeze as a freezer jam for up to 3 months or refrigerate and eat within 2 weeks.

As the holiday is coming up, the Cranberry Pear Chutney is a great twist to cranberry sauce. It would go well with turkey or as part of an appetizer charcuterie board.

All of these ingredients can be found at your local Real Canadian Superstore.

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James Chung

Vancouver Lifestyle, Cool Tech & Travel Adventure. Email: [email protected]

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