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Spiced Pear Vodka

recipe from Put ‘em Up

Ingredients
– 2 pears ($2.50/lb @ Santa Monica 3rd St. FM)
– 1 cinnamon stick
– 1 vanilla bean
– ¼ cup sugar
– 2 cups vodka

Learnings
HOLY MOLY THIS SMELLS GOOD. Vanilla cinnamon pear…It’s pretty hard not to eat this immediately and forget about that silly ol’ vodka.

VANILLA BEAN. $10 for 2 beans? Really?? I know that you can reuse them, but dadgum. This recipe called for the bean to remain intact during the infusion so once it’s done, I think I’ll cut the bean open and try it in Blueberry Vanilla Vodka or Brandied Plums With Cinnamon & Vanilla (depending on the lingering vodkaness).

Usings
Spiced Peartini!

Pear Ginger Preserves

recipe from Canning for a New Generation

Ingredients
– 3 lbs pears ($2.50/lb @ Santa Monica 3rd St. FM)
– 3 tbsp diced ginger
– juice and zest from 1 lemon
– 1½ cups sugar

Learnings
BRUNOISE. Hello, my new favorite knife cut. For as long as I can remember I’ve had a crush on tiny squares and circles (don’t even get me started on penny tile) so you can imagine how tickled pink I was to learn this for cutting the ginger. The recipe explains that by cutting the ginger brunoise-style, you introduce this tiny kick in every bite without it being overpowering.

Usings
Besides the usual biscuit or toast, it seems like this would be a lovely garnish/glaze for baked ham, pork, or turkey.