Preserving Summer’s Bounty: Canning Pears

Ripe-pears

Ripe (very, very ripe) pears waiting to be peeled and cut. I bought a 25 lb box of Bosch pears several weeks ago and was surprised to come home from a couple days away to discover just how ripe my pears were (since they had still been green the week before)!

Sliced-pears-in-lemon-water

I sprang into action by peeling and cutting, then putting the slices into a bowl of cool water with lemon juice added in to help keep them from browning too much. Peeling and cutting over-ripe pears can be a bit challenging. As I went on, I discovered that it was easiest to peel them whole (holding them very gently), and then core and slice them after. This seemed to prevent them from bruising or smooshing (a very technical term, indeed) as I did it.

Open-jars-of-pear-canning

After sanitizing the jars in my dishwasher, I heat them up on a cookie tray in the oven. I usually turn the oven to around 200 F and let them stay there for a good 10 minutes (or until I suddenly remember them!). The point of this is to further sanitize and to have the jars warm enough so that they don't crack when being put into the hot water in the canner. 

I canned my pears in a light syrup. I used a scant 1 cup of sugar (a raw sugar like Rapdura or Sucanat is best) for every 1 litre (quart) of filtered water. I bring the water and sugar to a boil (stirring in the beginning to make sure the sugar dissolves completely). You could also use honey, and would only need about 1/2-3/4 of a cup to achieve the same sweetness of a light syrup.

After filling the clean, hot jars with pear slices, I filled them up with the hot syrup leaving a 1/2 inch of headroom.

Next, I wiped off the jar mouths with a clean cloth, and put sanitized jar lids on top, then screwed on the metal screw tops tightly. To sanitize your lids, bring a small pot of water to a boil. Once it has boiled, turn the water off and add the lids to the hot water (not while it's still at a rolling boil, as this can ruin the lid's sealing ability). Let them sit in the hot water for a couple of minutes before removing to put on top of the prepared jars.

In the boiling water bath, pears require:

Pints- 20 minutes

Quarts- 25 minutes

Make sure that you begin timing only once the water in the canner is at a rolling boil (it sometimes requires a few minutes with the lid back on after you have added all of the jars inside), and that there is at least 1 to 2 inches of water above the top of each jar to ensure sufficient pressure to seal the jar lids.

Canned-pears-finished

Once the timer has gone off, I carefully remove the hot jars using canning tongs and I set them on several folded kitchen towels on the counter (to protect the counter from the heat). Listen during the next 30 minutes for a "pop" sound, indicating that the jars have sealed. If you're unsure (and I often miss hearing them seal), go over afterwords and lightly tap on the center of the lid. If it doesn't move, then it's already sealed. If it moves up and down or you can feel it push down when you first tap it, then it wasn't sealed properly. You can re-process these jars in the boiling-water bath once more (do the full 20 or 25 minutes again), and it's a good idea to take the lid and screw top off and re-tighten them before doing so.

After the jars are completely cooled off, I remove the screw bands to use on other canning projects. This also gives me the chance to see whether there are any without a completed seal. I stick these jars in the fridge and we will use them up within a week or two. The rest I store in my pantry or some other cool, dark place, and they are thoroughly enjoyed throughout the rest of the year!

That's it! These pears are perfect for adding to a pancake or waffle breakfast, to add to yogurt, or to just put in a bowl and eat plain. My kids and husband adore them!

I also dehydrated some pear slices this year, as well as turning quite a few of them into fruit leather. They're such a versatile fruit!

What do you like to do with pears when they are ripe and in abundance? Any other questions on the canning process?

A Parent's Guide to Natural Remedies eCourse

I don't know if you've seen it or not, but I've shared a couple times this week about a collection of resources I'm honored to be a part of with some really brilliant authors and bloggers.

Before it's gone, I wanted to make sure that you knew that "A Parent's Guide to Natural Remedies" eCourse is included in the collection. If you're anything like me, you want to learn more about using natural methods for taking care of your family, but sometimes it's just hard to know where to start. Roxanne and Wendi have done a masterful job of boiling down the complexities of wholistic family care - including homeopathy, cell salts, essential oils, probiotics, and a bunch more - and making it really accessible for regular moms.

The crazy thing is...although they usually sell the eCourse at $95 (and it's a steal at that!), they've agree to include it in the special collection of resources I've helped put together, for only $29.97.

But, if you think getting a crash course in natural remedies at two thirds off the regular price is awesome, I think you'll be surprised to learn that it comes with 98 other resources handpicked for moms like you and me.

The Ultimate Homemaking Bundleis a complete library of carefully selected eBooks, eCourses, audios, online conferences, and printable packs from many of the top homemaking bloggers and writers on the web, to help you be the best mom and homemaker you can possibly be.

Now, you're obviously not going to read every eBook, and every eCourse (that would be a bit much!), but I think you'll find a number of resources in the collection to inspire, teach, equip, and encourage you in your role as a homemaker for years to come.

Valued at over $1290 but at a price tag of just $29.97, this is one tool your home can't do without!

Plus, everyone who buys a bundle through Keeper of the Home gets a bonus 2 oz. liquid herbal remedy AND our very own 4 ebooks, all designed to help you with more affordable, healthy homemaking. Learn more HERE.

But time is running out! The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle will only be available from 8:00 a.m. EST on Monday, April 20 until 11:59 p.m. EST on Monday, April 27. motionmailapp.com

About Stephanie Langford

Stephanie Langford has a passion for sharing ideas and information for homemakers who want to make healthy changes in their homes, and carefully steward all that they've been given. She has written three books geared to helping families live more naturally and eat real, whole foods, without being overwhelmed, without going broke and with simple meal planning. She is the creator of Keeper of the Home.

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