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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Baked Pork Chops with Pickled Seckel Pears

Using the pickled seckel pears, we decided to bake some pork chops for dinner tonight. This was such an easy  and quick dinner. We started out by searing the porkchops on our griddle, instead of starting up our grill. We just placed the ingredients into a baking dish, made some quinoa with spinach and voila, a tasty and healthy meal for dinner!

4 boneless porkchops
5 pickled seckel pears, with juice
1 tbsp brown sugar

Sear the porkchops on a griddle at high heat. In a baking dish, lay the porkchops out. Pour the juice of the pears over the porkchops and lay the pears next to the chops. Sprinkle the brown sugar over the porkchops. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Bake for 25 minutes.


Refrigerated Pickled Seckel Pears

In my Internet surfing journeys, I found a beautiful recipe for refrigerated pickled seckel pears. Now I personally have never had a seckel pear, but upon further tasting (had to try one before I pickled them), found they were very sweet. They are so cute, and tiny and very versatile. The recipe I found came from the blog Learn to Preserve however, I altered the recipe just a bit to make it my own. I hope you enjoy it.


1 1/2 pounds Seckel pears (about 13)
2 cups apple cider vinegar
1 cup water
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
1 tsp sea salt or kosher salt
1 tsp black peppercorns (or mixed peppercorns such as pink, green, white and/or black)
3 cinnamon stick
8 star anise
1 tsp whole cloves
Rind of 1 orange, sliced

Wash pears well and set aside. In a sauce pan, combine the remaining ingredients.  Bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugars, then reduce to a low heat; just enough to keep it warm while you finish prepping the pears.  Prick a dozen holes in each pear, so their skins won't crack or burst in the hot brine. No need to make it perfect. Just rotate the pear while quickly poking holes in the surface of the pear, here & there, with a toothpick or skewer. Add all of the pears to the hot brine at once. Bring the liquid back to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 8-10 minutes, or until the pears seem soft when pierced with the tip of a knife. Remove the pan of pickled pears from the heat and let them cool. Once cool, gently spoon the pears into a jar and then carefully pour the brine over the top of them. Place a lid on the jar and store it in the refrigerator, for up to one month.