Preserve pears in this flavorful pear chutney for a quick, delicious weeknight meal or appetizer.
I have a confession… I’m not a big fan of pears. Or peaches for that matter. I guess maybe I’ve just never had a good pear? I’m not sure, but when I came across a recipe for pear chutney I kind of curled up my nose and moved along.
But, I would find myself continually coming across recipes for chutney and reminding myself that I had a pear chutney recipe sitting in the cupboard in a cookbook. So, I decided to give it a try because… well, you don’t know if you don’t try, right?
Chutney is generally a spicy condiment made from preserving fruit and sugar in vinegar. It actually originated in India and is a great combination for chicken, pork and beef.
It can also make an amazing appetizer by mixing it with some cream cheese.
I never really thought I would actually like chutney because I had often heard it compared to relish. And well, to be honest, I’m not a big fan of most relishes (though, I do like sweet pickle relish). But, this stuff is different. And it’s versatile.
You can add it to a block of softened cream cheese to make a quick, and very delicious appetizer. You can throw a jar of it over some chicken, add a bit of broth, and throw it in the slow cooker for an incredibly easy and flavorful meal later in the evening.
Same goes with topping pork chops and allowing them to slow cook in the flavors this chutney affords. Or, even as a unique spread for toast in the morning if you want to puree it in the blender.
This stuff is versatile and it’s delicious. It has completely changed my opinion on pears (I now make quite a few things with pears) and it has opened up my taste buds to trying different things. Because, like I said, you never know.
Pear Chutney Recipe Variations
- If you really don’t like the heat, you may omit (or reduce the amount of) the chile pepper.
- This recipe can be used with a combination of pears and apples, just apples or even just peaches to change up the flavor a little. You aren’t limited to just pears and the processing time will be the same.
- Use firm, under-ripe fruit for the best success.
- Allowing the chutney to sit for at least a week will bring out the best flavors.
- This recipe can be canned and stored at room temp for up to 1 year. If you don’t want to can it, it will keep in the fridge for about 3 weeks and the freezer for about 6 months.
Tools I used in This Recipe:
This pear chutney is a delicious way to preserve pears to make a flavorful weeknight dinner or quick appetizer.
- 6 LBS Pears (peeled, cored & chopped into 1/2" pieces)
- 2 1/2 Cups Light Brown Sugar
- 3 Cups Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 1/2 Cups Raisins
- 1 Lemon (seeded & finely chopped, include the peel)
- 2 Cloves Garlic (peeled & minced)
- 1 Chile Pepper (seeded & finely chopped)
- 1 Small Onion (finely chopped)
- 1 Cinnamon Stick
- 1/4 Teaspoon Allspice
1. Combine all ingredients in a large 5 quart saucepan and stir to combine. And begin heating over medium heat.
2. Cook mixture, stirring frequently for 30-45 minutes, or until the pears begin to soften and fall apart when you stir the mixture.
3. Once the pears are soft and the mixture has reduced a little, increase the heat to medium-high and continue cooking it down until the mixture has reduced to about 1/3 of its original volume. About another 30 minutes.
4. While the chutney is cooking down, prepare your water bath canner and sterilize your jars and lids. 5. Once the chutney is ready (you should be able to drag a spoon across the bottom of the pan and leave a mark without the chutney filling it in for a couple of seconds). You will ladle it into your 1/2 pint jars, leaving 1/2" headspace.
6. Wipe the jar rim and lid with a damp cloth. Center the lid on top, finger tighten a ring and place the jar back into the water bath canner.
7. Process for 10 minutes. Remove the jars to a towel-lined counter. Wait a minimum of 12 hours before checking for proper seal. Place jars in a cool dark place until ready to enjoy.
This chutney is really simple, delicious, and you can switch it up a bit if you want to to accommodate your palate. If you want a super easy dinner, just throw a jar of this on some chicken breasts or pork chops, add a couple cups of chicken broth (to either the chicken or pork) and cook it on low in a crockpot for 6 hours. Super delicious.
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