When I finished canning my “first choice” pears I had a basket full of smaller ones left over – not perfectly shaped, not really eating quality, and too small for me to be bothered with peeling, coring, slicing and canning, I looked for other options about what I could do with them.
My newly former boss, I found out, has horses – and would LOVE to have small ones for feeding the horses as treats – I will most definitely bear that in mind for next year’s harvest, but for this year, I wanted to see if there was something I could to with them that wouldn't be overly labour-intensive, but would provide some yummy winter-consumption results.
One of the websites I use when canning, Simply Canning, had a recipe for something called Crock Pot Pear Butter and I thought I might give that a try. I didn't like the ingredient list they had, so I went looking for other pear butter recipes and found one that I did like the look of on the Gimme Some Oven website. I like all of the spices added and decided to try this one.
On night three of canning my peaches, when the peaches were in the canner and cooking, I chopped up my pears and popped them into the crock pot with some lemon juice and honey – the lemon juice to keep the colour lighter (turns out that was a bust) and the honey as part of the recipe.
Pears cooked overnight in the crock pot, I woke up to a spicy fruity smell – yum! Since Jasmine was going to Doggie Daycare that day, I had a little extra time that morning and processed the pear butter (meaning I took it out of the crock pot and ran it through the food mill to extract the fruit flesh and discard the skins and seeds. I put the milled pears into a pot and let it sit in the fridge that day. When I got home, I got my canning supplies started again – water bath canner etc etc etc… and started cooking down the pears to a really thick consistency – and added the spices.
|Cooking down the Pear Butter|
So what is the verdict? Well, I think it tastes like really fancy applesauce – just made with pears instead… so I will probably not make that again. I guess next year some horses will get a treat!
With love across the waters…