pear & cardamom (agave) compote. I have quite the soft spot for this fruit. From Anjou, to Bartlett, to… take your pick. I’ve been overdosing (or properly dosing) all autumn on pears with crumbles and all, and this compote is quite the staple in our home. Plus, it makes a killer filling for rugelach (think chocolate pear and cardamom rugelach!).
The result is a pretty delicious (to say the least) pear compote with spicy cardamom tones. Sweetened with agave nectar rather than sugar, it is an autumn and winter must. Great on toast and paired with a good pecorino. Or think wintery, buckwheat pancakes with ricotta and this warm compote. It is all about the fall, spicy notes here.
Do note, however, that since agave nectar does not behave the same as sugar when put to boil, one must drain some of the liquid before running (half) of the mixture through the food processor and continuing to boil.
PEAR AND CARDAMOM (AGAVE) COMPOTE
Inspired by Rachel Saunder’s Pear Jam with Green Cardamom
makes about 3 cups
1 kg (2.2 oz) ripe pears, peeled, cored and diced (about 4)
1/3 cup dark agave nectar
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp green cardamom pods, lightly crushed
Toss the pears with the agave nectar and the lemon juice in a bowl, cover with cling film and refrigerate overnight.
Put the pears (and marinating liquid) in a large pot and put to boil over medium heat. Place the cardamom seeds in a tea ball and add it to the mixture. Cook the pears, stirring frequently, until they become translucent (about 10 minutes). Remove from the heat, drain the pears and run about 1/2 of them through the food processor. If too thick, add some of the drained liquid (which can be used to sweeten a lemonade, or something, later on).
Return the pureed and diced pears and the cardamom to the pot and boil over moderately high heat until the compote begins to thicken (about 5-7 minutes).
Remove the compote from the heat and transfer to a bowl to cool. Once cool, transfer to jars, tightly close and keep refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.