Gordon's make-ahead terrine is the perfect starter when you're entertaining a crowd
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Bring 200g light muscovado sugar and 300ml cider vinegar to the boil with 4 bay leaves, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Peel and cut 750g firm pears into small chunks, then simmer for 5 mins until just starting to soften. Turn off the heat, then leave to cool until ready to serve. Keeps for a week in an airtight container.
Place 1 large chicken in a stockpot with roughly chopped carrot, leek, onion and celery plus sprig each thyme and parsley. Cover with water. Bring to the boil and simmer for 2 hrs, skimming off any froth. Once cooked, leave to cool, then remove chicken. Strain stock and pick chicken meat off the bones. The stock will need to be reduced further by two-thirds to reach the required level of flavour, for 300ml strong stock you will need to start with about 1 litre of light stock.