Pear & Grilled Cheese Sandwich with a Simple Spinach Salad

Pear & Grilled Cheese Sandwich

One of my favorite preserves this winter is our Pear & Rosemary Conserve that I made a few weeks ago with beautifully Warren Pears from Frog Hollow Farm.  After making the first batch I couldn’t get enough of it and often times just ended up eating it with a spoon straight from the jar.  I decided I really needed to find other ways to enjoy this flavorful conserve.  So far for I’ve had it on toast and with oatmeal for breakfast, paired with blues (cheeses-preferably Point Reyes Farmstead Blue) for an appetizer, and served with grilled pork chops for dinner.   However, one of my favorite ways to enjoy this conserve is in a grilled cheese sandwich.  I love the sweet from the pears with a Jarlsberg, Gruyere, or a smokey Gouda.

This is an easy recipe that comes together quickly and requires no real measuring.  It can be adapted to your own particular tastes by changing the type of cheese or greens.

Pear & Rosemary Conserve

Ingredients

2 slices of Olive oil bread, sweet french, or sourdough
Jarlsberg Cheese
Spinach
Pear & Rosemary Conserve
Butter or Olive Oil

Butter a large skillet or cast iron pan and put onto medium heat.  Spread Pear & Rosemary Conserve onto one slice of bread and top with spinach leaves.  Place sliced cheese onto the other piece of bread.  Add each slice of bread to the pan and let cook until the cheese has melted.

Pear & Grilled Cheese with Pear & Spinach Salad

To keep with the spinach and pear theme I enjoyed my grilled cheese with a simple spinach salad and the following dressing.

Pear & Balsamic Dressing

1 tsp olive oil
1 tsp Pear & Rosemary Conserve
2 tsp balsamic vinegar

Whisk together and toss with a cup or two of baby spinach.

We hope everyone is having a great January.  Until next time.

Serendipitously,

Kristen

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Caramelized Pear & Rosemary Conserve

It’s crazy to think that we’re nearing the end of October.  Where has the time gone?  However, it is obvious now that fall is upon us – the light has changed, the shadows are just a bit longer, and the days seem to be getting shorter and shorter.   Another clue is the plethora of beautiful and fragrant pears  that are coming into the market.

Pears are wonderful in a variety of ways.  On warm days I love slicing them up and tossing them with some spinach, candied pecans, and goat cheese for a salad, or on cool nights making pear and cranberry crisp.  However, for a small gathering I just can’t resist a cheese plate with a Caramelized Pear and Rosemary Conserve.

For this recipe I used organic beautiful Warren pears from Frog Hollow Farm, organic cane sugar with organic molasses in place of conventional brown sugar, spices from the pantry, lemons, and rosemary from the garden.  This is a small recipe and will yield approximately 2 half pint jars.

Ingredients:

1 1/5 lbs. ripe buttery Warren Pears

1/3 cup Sugar

1/8 cup Lemon Juice

1 tsp Molasses

1  sprig of fresh Rosemary (approx 4 inches in length)

Dash each of ground cinnamon & freshly ground Nutmeg

1-2 cups of water on hand to use during the cooking process

Wash, core, de-stem, and cut the pears into about 2 inch pieces.  In a small to medium stock pot over medium heat combine pears, lemon juice, spices, and sugar & molasses (or brown sugar).  Give the mixture a good stir and let the pears begin to soften and caramelize (approx 10-15 minutes).

At this point add about 1/2 cup of water and the rosemary to pot, bring the pears to a soft boil, and continue stirring.  Continue adding water to the pears when the most of the moisture has evaporated and until pears have broken down and are soft and spreadable.  Once the desired consistency is reached, remove and discard the rosemary and ladle into clean sterilized jars.  Let the jars cool and then keep them in the refrigerator for 2-3 weeks.

Until next time.  Happy autumn everyone!

Serendipitously,

Kristen & Lynette