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Canning Pears

Canning pears, from Oak Hill Homestead

A couple of weeks ago I was given several buckets of pears. I laid them out in a single layer in the mudroom so they could ripen and soften. Then the weather began to turn cold and I set aside a day to work on them before they froze in the unheated room.

How to can pears, from Oak Hill Homestead

One sinkful at a time, I washed, peeled, sliced, and soaked in a solution of water and lemon juice to prevent browning. Hubby loves pears in heavy syrup so that was my goal.

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It's easy to water-bath can fruit using the raw-pack method, but I really dislike that the fruit floats in the finished jars. It also seems to absorb the liquid in the jars during the canning process, leaving the top pieces of fruit high and dry in storage. Opening the jar later can be a bit of a disappointment.

How to can pears, from Oak Hill Homestead

This can be prevented by simmering the fruit in the syrup before canning; the fruit is softer after the simmering process too. After simmering I used a slotted spoon to transfer the pear slices from the pot to the jars, then topped them off 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 canning lids and bands. Into the water bath canner they went, and were processed for 25 minutes for pints (we live more than 1,000 feet above sea level so I have to add an additional 5 minutes to the usual 20 minutes of processing time).

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.

If you need more in-depth directions for canning pears, my tutorial on canning apples gives the basics with step-by-step photos. Be sure to adjust the processing time for pears and for your altitude.

Caramel pear jam, the most decadent jam on the planet!

I kept half a dozen pears aside to make Spiced Caramel Pear Jam 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. Just sayin' but you really should make some!

How to can pears in syrup, from Oak Hill Homestead

This post has been shared at some of my favorite blog hops.


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  1. My ancient weather beaten pear tree didn make this year. It is really a tree that should be cut down but I don't have he heart to. It is a remnant of a different time and has provided many pears over it's lifetime.

  2. Yuuuuuuuuuummmmm. I wish somebody would gift me buckets of pears!! :D

  3. That's sad, Michelle. Such a history. I wouldn't cut it down either.

  4. Kathi at Oak Hill Homestead9:04 AM

    Rose, I was really fortunate - a case of being in the right place at the right time!

  5. Your spiced caramel pear jam looks delicious!

  6. Kathi at Oak Hill Homestead9:20 AM

    It IS delicious, Nancy, thank you! Stop on over for a slice of homemade bread and spiced caramel jam. ;-) (Don't you think all homemade jams and jellies taste better on homemade bread? Or vice versa?)

  7. These look so good! I can't wait to try canning some next summer. Thanks for sharing at the Homestead Blog Hop! Hope to see you again next week. :)

  8. These look great and so does the jam. We are heading into fruit time so I might take your advice this year if I can find some pears. We normally pick our apples off the side of the roads, which is such a blessing. Thanks for linking up at Good Morning Mondays. Blessings

  9. Thanks for showing how to can pears. I've only done it once and it was a huge job. best wishes, Linda Crafts a la Mode

  10. These look tasty!! I would love to get ahold of some home-grown pears! Thank you for sharing your down-to-earth homesteading posts on the Art of Home-Making Mondays. I always learn so much here!

  11. Kathi at Oak Hill Homestead5:22 PM

    Thank you for hosting the AoHM, Jes!


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