There are few foods more sublime than chocolate. I’m talking about the good stuff, the 70% cacao that melts in your mouth and makes you forget everything that came before.
I like how Barbara Crooker characterizes it:
Chocolate strolls up to the microphone
and plays jazz at midnight, the low slow
notes of a bass clarinet. Chocolate saunters
down the runway, slouches in quaint
boutiques; its style is je ne sais quoi.
Chocolate stays up late and gambles,
likes roulette. Always bets
on the noir.
– Barbara Crooker
Paired with fruit, chocolate is heavenly. Dipped, dusted or blended with ripe raspberries or apples, bananas or strawberries chocolate becomes sublime. The combination of pears and chocolate morphs into a sultry and deeply satisfying spread for anything buttery. Think warm and crisp croissants or brioche…..oh my. Or try it on top of your favorite nut butter treat – amazing!
This jam is deeply chocolatey, flavored with warm cinnamon, lots of sugar and gobs of chopped, dark chocolate. Oh let the angel choirs sing! This is perfect to make for gifts anytime but particularly during the holidays. It cooks up quickly and it’s only 5 ingredients. It’s not my recipe but comes from the wonderful Marisa of Food in Jars. (Adapted from “Notes From the Jam Cupboard” by Mary Tregallas.)
Try it out. If you’re a chocoholic like me, it’ll be your new favorite!
Pear and Chocolate Jam
- 2 1/2 pounds ripe, organic pears (approximately 7-8 pears)
- 2 lemons, juiced
- 3 1/2 cups granulated organic sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 5 1/2 ounces good quality dark chocolate-I used Scharffen Berger Baking Bar, Bittersweet Dark Chocolate (70% Cacao) (70% minimum, higher is better)
- Prepare a boiling water bath canner and 5-6 half pint jars or 10-12 four ounce jars.
- Peel, core and chop pears. Place them in a wide, non-reactive pan with the lemon juice and 2 tablespoons water.
- Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until pears begin to soften and break down.
- While pears cook, chop chocolate and set aside.
- Once pears are quite soft, add sugar and cinnamon. Increase heat to medium-high. Cook, stirring regularly, until the jam reached 220 degrees F.
- Remove the pot from the heat and scrape in the chocolate. Stir until it is fully melted.
- Funnel into prepared jars. Wipe rims, apply lids and rings and process for 10 minutes.
- When time is up, remove jars from canner and place on a folded kitchen towel to cool.
- Once jars are fully cooled, test seals. Any unsealed jars should be refrigerated and used promptly. Sealed jars can be stored at room temperature for up to one year.
- Yield: 5 or 6 half pints or 10-12 four ounce jars.
- I used Scharffen Berger 70% baking chocolate.
- For instructions on water bath canning check out these instructions.
- You want about a half cup of lemon juice. You need the acidity in the jam so the pH is correct for canning.
- If you don’t want to water bath can, no worries. Make a batch, pour into sterilized jars, seal when cool and store in your fridge.
- I bought some ripe Bartlett pears but you could use any you like.
- I decided to can this in the small 4 ounce jars. It’s a rich jam and it’s perfect for a little gift basket at Christmas. Give it with some fresh croissants!
- If you love canning, try my Apple Butter recipe. It’s spicy and perfect for using up those extra apples.