S5, E4: A Food Truck and a Pear Tree | A Chef's Life | PBS Food

Season 5, Episode 4: A Food Truck and a Pear Tree



Premiered October 28 on PBS. Check your local listings.

Vivian, her parents, and Flo pluck pears from a tree that’s been in the family for 100 years. The arrival of Vivian’s cookbook sparks a well of emotions as the reality of wheeling a food truck around the country sets in. In order to get a better handle on the truck, Vivian and her crew do a practice run at the farmer’s market and serve up Tom Thumb with pear relish — a dish that pleases most but leaves a bad taste in Ms. Lillie’s mouth.


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Featured Ingredient: Pears



Featured Recipe

Kieffer Pear Preserves

As Vivian wrote on her blog: “Kieffer preserves are so special in fact, I wouldn't dream of simply typecasting them as condiments for toast or biscuits. They've got way more potential than that."



  • 2 pounds peeled, cored and sliced Kieffer or sand pears 2 pounds granulated white sugar
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced, seeds removed


  1. Toss the sliced pears with the sugar and lemon slices in a large bowl. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it sit overnight in the refrigerator. (This step is crucial. Do not skip it. If you do, you'll make jam not preserves.) The next day, cook all the fruit and the accumulated juice over medium­low heat for about 30 minutes until the fruit is translucent.
  2. Pack fruit into hot, sterilized canning jars, leaving 1⁄4­inch headspace. Cook syrup for 3 to 5 minutes, or longer if it is too thin. Pour hot syrup over fruit, leaving 1⁄4­inch headspace. Wipe jar rims and adjust lids. Process for five minutes in a boiling water bath.


For more detailed instructions on boiling water bath canning, go to Fresh Preserving.

Yield: About 5 half-pint jars


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A Chef's Life: Season 1A Chef's Life: Season 2A Chef's Life: Season 3A Chef's Life: Season 4




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