Mostarda ranks among the great Italian condiments and is generally made from fresh and dried fruits simmered with vinegar. It’s a celebration of agrodolce, or “sour and sweet.” Cheeses, sandwiches, boiled meats, and especially a salumi platter are made all the better from it.
Combine all the ingredients with 1/2 cup of water in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a simmer, then lower the heat to medium-low and cook, adjusting heat as needed to maintain a lively simmer. Stir frequently, until most of the liquid evaporates and the fruits are soft and just starting to collapse, about 25 minutes.
Cool, discard bay leaves, and serve as part of an assorted salumi platter.
You could peel the pears if you’d like. Or replace the crushed red pepper with a whole chile de arbol.