Can-o-rama jam #2: Pear honey, pure and simple

1 11 2009
Bosc Pears, from Portland Farmers Market

Image via Wikipedia

They are the last pears of the season – Boscs, juicy and sweet. Their perfume called to me from the far end of the farm stand. They were unblemised, slightly yielding to a gentle squeeze but not yet bruised, still firm enough to eat out-of-hand and not yet ready to be stewed into pear butter.

Just perfect for these pears is the simplest of pear jams: pear honey, made with brown sugar and my current favorite jamming acidifier, white balsamic vinegar.

It’s smooth, not-too-sweet, with a hint of the grated ginger. Unfortunately, my finished jam shots are a little too dark, but I’ll upload the color-corrected picture later today. Meanwhile, I’m enjoing this last taste of summer!

Pear Balsamic Honey

3 lbs Bosc pears (peeled, cored)
2 cups brown sugar
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons fresh ginger root, grated

  • Run the peeled and cored pears through a food mill on a coarse grind (or chop very fine.)
  • Measure the fruit puree. Add the balsamic vinegar, and add water if needed so that the fruit puree measures 4 cups.
  • Stir the brown sugar and ginger root into the pear puree. Bring the mixture to a boil,
  • When the boiling puree can’t be stirred down, reduce the heat to medium and maintain the steady boil, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens and sheets from the spoon. Time will vary but this takes between 25-35 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat, skim off any foam that rises, and ladle into hot jars you’ve prepared for water bath canning. Leave 1/2 inch headspace.
  • Process in hot jars according to USDA directions for hot-water bath canning (10 min. for 8 oz. jars.)

Makes about 5 jars of pear honey.

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More Online Jam: How-to-can videos

21 10 2009
Caning Apple Pie Filling
Image by upturnedface via Flickr

‘Net searches turn up the most amazing things.

Yesterday, searching for a more refined method for drying my overabundant herb harvest, I wandered into CanningUSA — a site which offers recipes, how-to videos and podcasts, and lots of very specific canning information. No longer do novice canners need to plow through tables of canning instructions; if you learn better by watching, then the videos of various canning and preserving processes are made just for you!

Need some visuals that explain how to make and can Jam and Infused Fruit?

Need an explanation of the differences between raw, hot and cold pack canning methods?

Hoping to put up some of the apples or pears filling your local farmer’s market?

If you’re looking for a visual guide to canning and preserving, as well as some interesting new improvisations on familiar preserving recipes, you might want to drop into the CanningUSA site, and investigate their online help section.

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