12 Ways with Pears

Pear season is here!  I’m making three batches of my favorite pear ginger preserves, plus a round of pear cardamom jam, this week. After weeks of spending hours into peeling peaches and pitting cherries, it is so nice to be able to simply core and chop pears. Here are 12 ways to preserve your own pears this fall:

12 Ways with Pears

Infuse It:

Ginger pear vodka via Art & Lemons

Pear liqueur via Healthy Green Kitchen

Pear-infused brandy via Boulder Locavore


Can It:

Boozy pear sauce via Local Kitchen

Pear & chocolate jam via Food in Jars

Pear & ginger preserves

Pear apple jam via Sugarcrafter

Pear butter in the slow cooker via Get the Good Stuff!

Pear ginger ginger jam via Cake Walk

Pear juice via Foodie with Family

Pear salsa

Saged pear butter via Tigress in a Jam

What are your favorite ways to put up pears?

Cranberry Mustard


This year, I’m all about the food gifts, interspersed with small handmade or store-bought gifts. Simple little gifts that I am fairly certain they will all love. One family member (I’m not telling who!) is getting a box of cookies and a 2013 calendar from their favorite artist.  Another will receive a box of popcorn seasonings and a cute little zip bag I’ve sewn. And someone’s going to get some homemade mustard with a book.

But it isn’t just any cranberry mustard.  I’ve holiday-fied it with some allspice and cloves.  It is super simple to make, regardless of whether you can it or not.


Cranberry Mustard

Prep Time: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Cook Time: 45 minutes

Yield: About 5 4-ounce jars

Cranberry Mustard

This mustard is a perfect gift for the holiday season, especially with its festive additions of cranberries and warm spices. I packed this mustard in little four-ounce jars for gifting, but you may also choose to use half-pint jars.


  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 2/3 cup yellow mustard seeds
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 3/4 cups fresh cranberries
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup dry mustard powder
  • 1 tablespoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves


  1. Bring the vinegar to a boil in a small saucepan. Remove the vinegar from the heat and add the mustard seeds. Allow to sit, uncovered, for 1 1/2 hours.
  2. Prepare for canning. Wash the jars and flat lids with hot, soapy water. Put the jars in the canning pot and fill the pot with hot water. Heat over medium-high heat to keep the jars hot. Place the lids in a heat-proof bowl.
  3. Pulse the mustard seeds in a food processor with the water and Worcestershire sauce. Add the cranberries and pulse again until the cranberries are mostly pureed.
  4. Return the mustard seeds and cranberries to the saucepan and boil for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  5. Whisk in the sugar, mustard powder, allspice and cloves. Boil, stirring occasionally, until the mustard is reduced by 1/3, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat.
  6. Move some of the boiling water from the canning pot into the heat-proof bowl containing the lids. Line the hot jars up on a folded towel, then pour the water out of the heat-proof bowl and off the lids.
  7. Fill the jars with mustards up to 1/4” below the rim, then top with the liquid from the pot.
  8. Use a clean towel to wipe any mustard off the rims, then top each jar with a lid and a tightened ring. Place the jars back in the canning pot and make sure they are covered by at least 1 inch of water. Bring to a boil and process for 10 minutes. Place the jars on a folded towel and allow to sit, undisturbed, for 24 hours. Check the seals of the lids after 1 hour. If a seal has not formed, refrigerate the jar immediately.

Make Ahead and Storage

If you are hand-delivering the mustard, you can skip the canning step. Just fill the jars with hot mustard and put the lids on. Allow them to sit on a dish towel at room temperature until they are cooled, then refrigerate. The mustard will stay good in the refrigerator for 2-3 months.