Pear-Kissed Applesauce

I have a problem. A canning problem, that is. I am more than a little obsessed with it lately. When I saw local Bosc pears on super-sale the weekend before we left for Italy, I had to scoop some up to can. Even though we were leaving the country in 72 hours and had a million other things to do. See? Told you I had a problem.

I love the pear and apple mix in this sauce, and the little bits of sugar and spices really brings out the fruity fall flavors. Enjoy!

And if you aren’t into canning, a) you need to come visit me, and I’ll teach you how to do it and b) you can halve the recipe. Unsealed, the sauce should be fine in the refrigerator for 2-3 weeks.

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Pear-Kissed Applesauce

Yield: Makes 3 1/2 pints, plus a little extra

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds apples
  • 1 pounds Bosc pears
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons cloves
  • 1/4 cup turbinado sugar

Instructions

  1. Core and chop the apples and pears into 1" pieces. Place the fruit and water into a crock pot, cover, and turn on high. Allow to cook for 2 hours, then use an immersion blender to break the fruit down further. Add the spices and sugar, and allow to cook for another 2 hours. Blend once more before canning.
  2. Savvy Tip: If you don't have an immersion blender, you can process the preserves in batches in a food processor or blender.
  3. While the applesauce cooks, 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.
  4. When the sauce is almost done, 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.
  5. Fill the jars with applesauce up to ¼” below the rim. Use a clean towel to wipe any preserves 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 15 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.
http://www.savvyeat.com/pear-kissed-applesauce/

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Pears Two Ways

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Pears are by far my favorite fall fruit. I like apples as much as the next person, but for me, pears are where it’s at. Well, pears and yellow fall raspberries. But since those aren’t quite in season yet, pears are my current favorite. My preferences can be fickle. 😉

With a lot of apple varieties, you can store them in a cool, dark, dry place and they will last for months. Pears, unfortunately, aren’t quite that hardy, so they must be canned if you want to enjoy them for months beyond their season!

Lucky for me, I found 7 pounds of these gorgeous pears for $7 on Thursday. And just like that, I ended up with 11 jars of pear preserves. Since some friends helped me make the first 6 (more on that on Wednesday!), 5 jars flew out of my kitchen this weekend. So now I need to get my hands on some more pears so I can test out some other recipes and enjoy more of my favorite fruit… in the meantime, here are the two recipes I successfully created this weekend.

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Pear and Ginger Preserves

Adapted from “Canning for a New Generation” by Liana Krissoff

Makes 6 half-pint jars

4 lb pears

4 T finely diced fresh ginger

Zest of 1 lemon

4 T fresh lemon juice

1 ¼ c sugar

2 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp cloves

Peel, core and dice the pears.

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.

In a deep stockpot, bring all the ingredients to a boil. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the pears appear translucent. Remove from heat and stir gently.

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.

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Fill the jars up to ¼” below the rim. Use a clean towel to wipe any preserves 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 5 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.

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Notes: These had just the right level of sweetness, with a spicy kick of ginger. Everyone agreed that these would be perfect in a pear crumble!

Maple Pear Preserves

Adapted from “Canning for a New Generation” by Liana Krissoff

Makes 5 half-pint jars

3 lb pears

5 T fresh lemon juice

1 ¼ c maple syrup

2 tsp cinnamon

½ tsp cloves

Follow the same process as for Pear and Ginger Preserves.

Notes: I like these, but they may be a little too sweet for my preferences. However, the flavor will hopefully mellow out a bit during storage, so maybe they will be just right when I open them!

Next time, though, I think I’d cut the syrup down to 3/4 c!