- 1 orange, juice and zest
- 10 cloves
- 1 tbsp allspice berries
- 1 tbsp juniper berries
- 4 small cinnamon sticks
- 4 star anise
- 1 litre cider vinegar
- 500ml water
- 300g caster sugar
- 3kg firm pears, peeled, cored and quartered
- 4 sprigs rosemary
- Pare the zest from the orange and cut into thin strips. Add to the pan with the juice and all the other ingredients, except the pears and rosemary. Stir together over a gentle heat until the sugar has dissolved.
- Add the pears and simmer for 15 minutes, or until they are tender but still hold their shape.
- Remove the pears and spices with a slotted spoon and let them cool slightly in a sieve placed over a bowl. Pack into the sterilised jars, ensuring the spices are evenly distributed.
- Bring the poaching liquid to the boil, and boil rapidly for around 5 minutes to allow the flavours to intensify. Ladle into the jars, making sure the pears are completely covered, and add a sprig of rosemary to each. Seal and label the jars.
Tip: The pears can be eaten after 1 week. Unopened, they will keep for 2 months in a cool, dark place. Once opened, store in the fridge and eat within 2 weeks.
Cook’s note: The perfect accompaniment to cold meats and game.