Spiced Pickled Pears

Spiced Pickled Pears | Gather and Graze

‘Tis a fortunate thing to have friends with fruit trees… even more so when they quite generously wish to share them with you. Following on from my earlier post on Pear and Almond Upside-Down Cake, John has continued to bring along bags of pears each and every week for all who have met up for coffee on Wednesdays. They are sadly reaching the end of their season now, so this may well be the last of the home-grown pears… until next year.

I’ve not been the only one to create delicious treats in the kitchen using these gifted pears. Two of the other Mums, who we meet up with, brought along ‘Pear & Blueberry Butter’ (which we slathered on home-made scones in situ and then graciously each took home a little jar for later) as well as a wonderfully moist Pear Cake. All in all, a fabulous celebration of the Pears of 2015!

Since the cake I made a few weeks ago was so very quickly devoured by my family, I wanted to make a little something to share with my coffee friends. Here’s hoping they’ll enjoy these little jars of Spiced Pickled Pears, that I’ll pass on to them next week.

Spiced Pickled Pears | Gather and Graze

Spiced Pickled Pears | Gather and Graze

  • Servings: Made 8 x 120ml (4oz) Jars
  • Print
  • 500ml (2 Cups) Organic Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 500g (2¼ Cups) Raw Caster Sugar
  • 8 Strips of Fresh Lemon Peel (pared carefully from the lemon with no pith)
  • 60ml (¼ Cup) Fresh Lemon Juice
  • 1 Star Anise (broken into pieces)
  • 1 Cinnamon Stick (broken into chunks)
  • 8 Whole Cloves
  • 1 Teaspoon Whole Peppercorns (lightly crushed using a mortar and pestle)
  • 1 Small Red Chilli (seeded and thinly sliced)
  • 1kg Pears (cored and sliced, I prefer to leave the skin on)

Be sure to sterilise your jars while the pears are poaching, so that they are ready to go when required.

Place all ingredients except for the pears into a medium saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring now and then to ensure that the sugar has dissolved. Add the pears and allow to simmer gently for about 15 minutes, until the pears are lovely and tender. Remove the pears, using a slotted spoon to a colander sitting over a bowl. Bring the remaining liquid in the saucepan back up to the boil and allow to bubble away for about a further 15 minutes, until slightly syrupy.

Divide the pear slices equally into your jars, being sure to get a little of the lemon peel, spices and chilli into each jar as well. Using a ladle, top up each jar with the spiced vinegar liquid. Seal with lids.

At this point, I placed my filled jars into a hot water bath (a stockpot of boiling water) for about 15 minutes, before removing to the kitchen bench to sit until they reached room temperature.

Label the jars and then store them somewhere nice and cool (preferably for about a month) before opening.

Spiced Pickled Pears | Gather and Graze

Spiced Pickled Pears are lovely served with a cheese platter or alongside cold cuts of meat or better still… warmed slightly to accompany a delicious roast dinner.

Spiced Pickled Pears | Gather and Graze

Recipe adapted from one found on the BBC Good Food website.


16 thoughts on “Spiced Pickled Pears

  1. Kitsch n flavours

    How come I missed this last night?! And I noticed it on FB, which I wouldn’t allow myself to read during the day. As I like reading blogs at night. These are fabulous! I just love pears – full stop – but would never bother to poach them. This is the perfect alternative. And something I never see over here. So the recipe adapted from the BBC surprised me. Absolutely love this idea. Particularly as I really like fruit and cheese together. But I usually only ever bother with green grapes that are nice and ripe. These would go so well. And I happen to love the idea of the pear and blueberry butter as well; another technique I’ve known about for years but have yet to make. Inspiring, as usual!

    1. Margot @ Gather and Graze Post author

      Ha, that’s really quite funny as recently I’ve been contemplating deleting my Gather and Graze FB page… if I had, you might have missed this one completely! Fabulous to know that the recipe appeals to you Johnny… and so many different spice options you could use. If I’d had some fresh ginger on hand, I would have chopped a little to add into this one as well. I’ve also seen other recipes with juniper berries and allspice, orange juice/peel instead of lemon… This might be a nice little addition to your range??! 😉 Hope you get a chance to give it a try sometime.

  2. Francesca

    Someone should start the beatification process for John! 😜 I wish I could attend your Wed meetings!
    I love your picked pears! I’m sure they complement cheese wonderfully! I would rather go with pears with my cheese rather than apples!
    Lovely done as always, Margot!!! 😍

    1. Margot @ Gather and Graze Post author

      Haha, I’ll have to let (the future) Saint John know about your sweet comment Francesca! He’ll love that and have a good laugh. I’m not the most social/outgoing person in the world… but I do really enjoy catching up with this group for a coffee and a chat once a week. 🙂
      Thanks so much for your generous comment – so pleased that you liked the pears!

  3. Fig & Quince

    This is one of my favorite desserts. I can only imagine how much sweeter it’d be to have it be made by you from your friend’s pear tree! LOVE! ps: hope to come up for air in April and catch up on all I’ve missed on your beautiful blog. Till then: boos boos! ❤

    1. Margot @ Gather and Graze Post author

      Azita, I’d never even thought about using these for dessert… do you serve them accompanied by anything else? Excited to be able to suggest another use for these! 🙂 I hope you’re well my friend. M.xx

    1. Margot @ Gather and Graze Post author

      Thanks Mary! I’d never tried pickled pears before, until I was given a jar as a gift for Christmas last year. I fell immediately in love with them and so happy to find that they’re very easy to make and stash away for the months to come!

  4. Fae's Twist & Tango

    Margot, I ❤ , ❤ , ❤ this! I just pinned it too. I love your photo placing it next to a brie and suggesting that it goes well with cheese and meats. Thank you for sharing the recipe!

    1. Margot @ Gather and Graze Post author

      That’s so very kind of you Fae – thank you! The pickled pears work perfectly with the brie, cutting through the richness ever so slightly! Plus they’re so quick and easy to make too. 🙂


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