I’m one of those transplanted city girls that moved to the country, and I didn’t grow up learning how to can food. This past week my husband Jerry and I canned our first batch of pear butter. We had fun working side by side, picking, peeling, parring, cooking and canning. What a fun thing to do as a family.
We have two Keifer pear trees in our front yard that are overflowing with pears this year. There are so many pears that many of the branches have broken off. Keifer pears are hard as a rock and I didn’t know what to do with them. We’ve been picking them and giving them to the 10 horses that are on our property.
We decided to offer pears to as many people as possible. We announced at church that we had tons of Keifer pears if anyone needed any. We were surprised at the response. Several families at church said they made pear pie and pear butter and would love to have some pears.
Each Saturday my husband would pick several boxes of pears to bring to church on Sunday. We gave away tons of pears and our trees are still full. One older couple invited us over to help them can pear butter so we could learn for ourselves. It was so much fun.
This week my husband and I canned 7 pints of pear butter. 3 made with Splenda and 4 made with sugar. Hmmmm it is so good! I’d like to share our receipe with you. It was given to us by this sweet couple that taught us how to can the pears.
8 cups of chopped pears (ground)
4 cups of sugar or Splenda
1 tsp of cinnamon
1/4 tsp of ground cloves
Combine and simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours stirring frequently. Skim off foam and pour into jars leaving 1/4 inch headspace. Adjust lids and process for 10 minutes in a hot water bath.
Makes about 3 pints…..Enjoy!
Kiefer pear fruit and foliage (from Hedrich, 1921, Pears of New York).
This is a hybrid pear – probably a cross between the Chinese sand pear and
Bartlett – that was named in 1876 by Peter Kieffer. Although its internal
quality is inferior to European pears such as Bartlett, Anjou, and Bosc, it
was grown extensively in the USA in the first part of the 1900’s. As a tree it
is resistant to fireblight – a major disease of European pears grown in humid
Pear flowers. The mixed flower buds of pear produce multiple flowers and
leaves from each bud.
Bartlett pear fruit and foliage (from Hedrich, 1921, Pears of New York).
This variety was originally named as ‘William’ in England in 1770. It has been the
major pear variety in the USA for over 80 years. At present it accounts for about
75% of US production. Much of the production is canned.
Anjou pear fruit and foliage (from Hedrich, 1921, Pears of New York).
This is an old French variety, originally called Beurre’ d’ Anjou. It has been an
important winter pear in the USA since the beginning of the 1900’s. It ripens
after Bartlett and stores up to 180 days. It accounts for about 16% of US pear
Bosc pear fruit and foliage (from Hedrich, 1921, Pears of New York).
This pear originated from Belgium (1807) as ‘Calebosse Bosc’ which was later
changed to ‘Beurre’ Bosc’. This Winter pear ripens after Bartlett and has
russetted skin and a long pyriform shape.