Monday, 14 April 2014

A basket full of pears.

Due to the prolonged drought last year we have been fairly limited this season as to what fruit we can preserve. The supplies have been lower and more expensive than usual. Even our neighbours who usually have their own Apples,plums,apricots,peaches, pears ,quinces ,cherries and mulberries have had  nothing at all this year.
So  with this in mind when I was shopping the other day I noticed that pears were on sale at Harris Farm Market at 99 cents a kg, so I decided to purchase about 15 kgs.
So, I thought about what I could preserve. I decided to do pear slices and diced pears in extra light syrup.(we are trying to cut down on the sugar  load a little)
I set to work peeling,cutting and coring the pears and as each was done I dropped them into a solution of water and lemon juice to stop them from turning brown.
The pears were then packed into pint mason jars and covered with an extra light syrup made by dissolving  1 1/4 cups white sugar into   5 1/2 cups of hot  water .
I then removed the bubbles from the jars, wiped  the rims clean with  white vinegar on paper towel and completed the seals and processed  in my electric water bath preserver for  20 minutes
I was on a roll, and thought about what else I could make,so  I went and purchased some more pears and some other fruit and started on making some fruit salad  cocktail.
So the peeling and chopping began again, I placed all the fruit in a big stockpot, mixed it all up well and then packed into my jars, poured the same extra light syrup over and then  removed the bubbles with a good old chopstick.

The jar rims were then wiped  clean, lids fitted to seal and  they were processed in my electric water bath preserver for 20 minutes.
I had about 2 kgs of pears left after this and  wanted to try a recipe for Caramelized vanilla pear preserves that a canning friend   Bev Dobson had passed on to me.
So , back to the chopping board I went. This recipe calls for 2kgs of diced pears(cut to about 1-2 cm )
To which you add 2 cups sugar,1/3 cup lemon juice and 1 good teaspoon vanilla  extract.
This is then cooked until the fruit softens and the liquid  reduces, thickens a little and changes to a  light golden colour. The smell is amazing as it cooks.
It is then put into jars, sealed and water bathed for 10 minutes to  make sure that the seal is intact to make shelf stable.
All in all I was quite pleased with my couple of days work, these will all be wonderful additions to my pantry shelves and I am certain they won't last very long.Having said that, we have already gobbled up two pints of pears .
I now have to think about what to preserve next, I have this thing where I struggle to look at empty jars on the shelf, I want them full again as quickly as possible....All part of that Canning Addiction I suspect.
I have also started my own Facebook  page. It is called" My Canning Addiction" and can be found at
I hope to see you there sometime,
So until we meet again,

No comments:

Post a Comment