One sinkful at a time, I washed, peeled, sliced, and soaked in a solution to prevent browning. Hubby loves pears in heavy syrup.
When I've canned apples in the past I used the raw-pack method, but I really dislike that the fruit floats in the finished jars, and it absorbs the liquid in the jars during the canning process, leaving the top pieces of fruit high and dry.
This can be prevented by simmering the fruit in the syrup before canning; the fruit is softer after the simmering process too. I used a slotted spoon that had been my mother's to transfer the pear slices from the pot to the jars, then filled them with the hot syrup from the pot. After running a plastic knife along the sides of each jar to dislodge bubbles, adding more liquid if necessary, and wiping the jar rims, I added the lids and bands. Into the water bath canner they went, and were processed for 25 minutes for pints.
No floating fruit this time, and the jars are so pretty lined up on the counter to cool. One jar didn't seal, so we ate the contents with dinner the next day. They were delicious.
I kept half a dozen pears aside to make Spiced Caramel Pear Jam (pictured above) and put 2 gallon-size Ziploc bags of peels and cores into the freezer for jelly-making later. (That Spiced Caramel Pear Jam is delicious in these jam bars, too.)
Basic directions for canning pears can be found here - Pickyourown has directions for canning just about anything. Also check out the USDA preserving site.
to take a picture before I peeled all those pears!)
My hope is to inspire you, and to encourage your homesteading plans and your dreams of a