My precious, sweet Grandma canned foods of all kinds. When she wasn’t quilting in the spring and winter months, as she did things seasonally, she was preparing tomatoes, cucumbers, apples, pears, and more, creating a bounty that would bless not only her immediate family, but many families around her, as well.
Why I didn’t spend ALL of my extra time soaking up this woman’s goodness is only because I met this really cute guy that I fell head over heels in love with. (We got married and had 8 babies.)
Back to Grandma’s kitchen. I always knew when she was canning, because the entire living room, dining room, and kitchen were involved. Since there was so much produce to process, you’d often find her sitting with a big bowl in her lap, peeling away, while the pressure cooker was fast at work on the stove. I did manage to glean a tiny bit of her methods as I was truly amazed at how much surplus food she knew how to stock her pantry with. The smells coming from her kitchen were like her – delightful, sweet, and heavenly.
Whenever I have an abundance of pears that have suddenly turned magically ripe and ready to eat, I like to use them up quickly and make things like Pear Pecan Muffins or baby food.
And obviously, pear preserves! So simple, delicious, and easy to make. Soul-warming food.
* This recipe makes one (half-pint) jar. Multiply recipe by how many half-pint jars you wish to make.*
- 2 pears, washed, peeled, cored, and diced
- 1/3 cup sugar (Adjust to your desired level of sweetness. Some pears are sweeter than others.)
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla (optional)
- Sterilize jars, lids, and rings which you will be filling with preserves.
- Wash, peel, and cut pears into chunks.
- Place pears in pot with just enough water to cover them.
- Boil on medium/low heat until tender.
- Mash some of the pears with whisk, and stir.
- Add sugar, cinnamon, and some vanilla, too, if you’d like.
- Boil and stir until the mixture is thick and syrupy.
- Place in half-pint jars while still hot. Put lids on jars immediately.
- Serve on fabulous homemade bread.
1. I find that using half-pint jars are easiest for a few reasons. You can keep a fresh jar open, use it up as needed, while other jars stay fresh. They’re easier to handle. They’re charming. You can tie a ribbon and a tag on them and they make the cutest gifts.
2. If I’m just making one jar of preserves, I don’t worry about needing to go through the whole canning process. And if I’m only making a few jars, I still don’t need to worry about going through the whole canning process. Even if all of the jars don’t self-seal, (many of them will), we can store them in the fridge and use them up fast enough without having to make sure they have a seal.
3. You know if your jar has sealed by pressing down firmly on the lid. If it does not move and you can’t push it down any further, as a general rule, it has sealed. This will be confirmed when you open that jar the first time and you hear the “pop” of the seal breaking.
4 Caution should be exercised when NOT using canning process. This post is intended to explain a simple recipe for pear preserves for the purpose of immediate consumption.
Do you make your own fruit preserves?
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