Questions about pear preserves

prairie_love(z3/4 ND)November 10, 2005

Hi,

A little while ago, I posted this recipe to see if you all think I can can it (the answer was yes :)). I will be doing it this weekend, and have a couple of questions that I hope you can help with. The recipe is below to refresh our memories.

1. I have D"Anjou pears, not Bosc or Bartlett. I can't see that it would matter, does any one else see a reason?

2. Do you think the chopped lemon includes the rind? I presume it does...

3. Why do I let it sit at room temp for 12 hours?

Carol, I will try your suggestion of doing some of it with crystallized ginger, I think that's a great idea.

Thanks,

Ann

Ginger-Pear Preserves

6 cups cubed ripe Bosc or Bartlett pears (about 1 3/4 pounds)

3/4 cup chopped seeded lemon (1 large)

1/4 cup pear-flavored liqueur

1 to 2 tablespoons grated peeled fresh ginger

4 cups sugar

1/2 cup water

1. Combine first 4 ingredients in a large saucepan. Stir in sugar and water, bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer 15 minutes. Remove from heat, cover and let stand 12 hours (do not refrigerate).

2. Bring to a boil, uncovered, over high heat. Reduce heat, and simmer 1 hour and 15 minutes or until thick, stirring occassionally. Place 1 cup preserves into each of 4 sterilized 8-oz. jars.

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mellyofthesouth(9a FL)

The overnight sitting is to allow the pears to absorb the sugar so that they don't float as much. I made Emeril's recipe with crystallized ginger. It was nice. I made this batch with St. Remy which are cooking pears. I've made pear honey with d'anjou, bosc and bartlett. My palette is not sophisticated enough to tell the difference in the end. I cooked my pears a few minutes too long and they are almost like candied pears.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2005 at 10:47AM
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annie1992

prairie love, I think the chopped lemon does not include the rind, it would be more like marmalade than a preserve. My pear preserve recipe, which I got from Carol, has the lemon and seeds in a cheesecloth bag which is eventually discarded.

I don't believe the variety of pears matters, although some may remain more firm than others and retain their shape better (although after an hour's worth of cooking, I can't imagine there's much left) like some apples are better for sauce than others.

Finally, I have no idea why it sits at room temperature for 12 hours, but I have several recipes that call for that step, so I imagine there is some reason (besides giving you a break from making preserves, LOL)

Annie

    Bookmark   November 10, 2005 at 11:32AM
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CA Kate

The lemon rind would give off the essential oils found only there. I've seen other recipes made this way and the rind is included.

This sounds like a recipe worth trying.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2005 at 12:13PM
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annie1992

That's true, Westelle, but pears are a relatively delicate flavor, I think. If you add all that lemon peel to the ginger, the pear would become nearly unrecognizable, overcome with the much stronger flavors.

Maybe not, but that's what I think.

Annie

    Bookmark   November 10, 2005 at 1:39PM
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prairie_love(z3/4 ND)

Thanks for the help. I understand the point Westelle is making, but since the other pear recipes I see do not use the peel, I think I will omit it also. I'm really looking forward to this one - thank you for the info.

ann

    Bookmark   November 10, 2005 at 2:05PM
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mellyofthesouth(9a FL)

Emeril uses a teaspoon of zest which was not overwhelming. Come to think of it, I bought a jar of pear honey one time that had slices of lemon in it and I did find it overwhelming. I had wanted pear honey not marmalade.

    Bookmark   November 10, 2005 at 2:47PM
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readinglady(z8 OR)

There are many ways this can be done. The overnight soak not only allows the pears to absorb the syrup (equalize weight so less floating) as Melly said, but it also assures the sugar is completely dissolved. That speeds up the cooking time.

I think an hour and 15 minutes sounds excessive. It's possible the preserves would take that long to cook, but I don't think it's likely. They probably would end up overcooked and caramelized-tasting.

I would peel pears and place in Fruit Fresh or ascorbic acid water to preserve color. Drain. Add lemon. The lemon could be paper-thin slices (as in marmalade), finely chopped lemon, including peel, or supremed lemon. Supremed lemon is lemon segments. Run a knife down the edge of each segment to separate from the membrane.

I would be inclined to use either paper-thin slices or supremed lemon, with perhaps some thin shreds of lemon peel. (No pith).

I would leave out the water. You just end up having to boil it out. Instead, add the sugar to the drained fruit. Fold gently over the fruit and let it sit in the refrigerator overnight until the sugar is dissolved, stirring once-in-a-while, if you think of it. This saves you having to add water. It's more time, but no more effort for you, just sitting time.

Next day, cook the mixture as directed and let sit again. If you're using fresh ginger, add it before cooking, so that it "candies" in the syrup. I would leave out the pear liqueur until the end, just before bottling, maybe start with 2 tablespoons (1/8 cup) and taste, then decide if I want to add more or not, up to the 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup). Why cook liqueur for an hour and half?

If using candied ginger, when it is added would depend on how soft (tender/young) and moist it is. King Arthur Flour sells a moist candied ginger in syrup. When I use it I add it at the very end, sometimes with just a hint of the syrup. Regular, hard candied ginger I would add after the overnight maceration of the pears and lemon in the sugar and before the first cooking.

OK, hope this helps. I really like plain pear preserves, but this does sound like a really intriguing recipe, especially with the pear liqueur. Let us know how it turns out and what you decided to use.

Carol

    Bookmark   November 10, 2005 at 4:57PM
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prairie_love(z3/4 ND)

Wow. Thanks for all the advice Carol. I simply don't know enough (yet) to know all those places that I could make changes. I will be making this tomorrow - which means the next day before it's done - and will surely let you know what I do and how it turns out.

With great appreciation to all,

Ann

    Bookmark   November 10, 2005 at 10:59PM
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mellyofthesouth(9a FL)

I wondered about the time also, but it does simmer, as opposed to boil. The recipe I made boiled for 35 minutes. The candied ginger did not overwhelm the pears at all and I liked it.

Carol,
You've probably posted it elsewhere, but what is your particular method of making the preserves?
Thanks, Melly

    Bookmark   November 11, 2005 at 11:06AM
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prairie_love(z3/4 ND)

Well, after all this helpful discussion, I decided to go with the Emeril recipe that Melly posted . I hope you all don't hate me for not using this one after your great advice! But, this is my first time with preserves and the Emeril recipe seemed a little more straightforward. I have more pears though, so might still try this.

The main reason I am posting now though is to say, I am in the middle of cooking it down right now, so don't yet know how the final product will turn out. BUT, this recipe is worth making simply for the fabulous smell! Oh my goodness, does the house ever smell wonderful right now! I can't wait to try this.

Ann

    Bookmark   November 13, 2005 at 12:14PM
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mellyofthesouth(9a FL)

Ann,
That's what my nine year old said when she came in while I was making it. She said, "Wow, what smells so great!"

    Bookmark   November 13, 2005 at 1:18PM
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readinglady(z8 OR)

I love the smell of pear preserves. Any recipe. It's one of the best perfumes ever.

    Bookmark   November 13, 2005 at 6:05PM
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prairie_love(z3/4 ND)

Yup :) My house smells good, and the preserves taste wonderful. I'm a happy camper. Again.

Ann

    Bookmark   November 13, 2005 at 6:34PM
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CA Kate

Prairie: I made the first part of the original recipe today as written and it's now "sitting".
? Have you or any of you others ever made this recipe? All this volumn is suppose to end up being 4 cups!? That's going to be really cooking it down a lot. Tomorrow should be interesting.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2005 at 8:00PM
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prairie_love(z3/4 ND)

Oh gosh, Westelle, I'm sorry, but I did not make the version that I posted. I made the Emeril version that Melly posted. That does sound like a lot of cooking down, but it sounds yummy. Please let me know how it turns out!

Ann

    Bookmark   November 19, 2005 at 9:20PM
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MrsBartholomew(6a Canada)

If you want the essential oil from the lemon without overwhelming the pear with the taste of peel, you can scrub the lemon vigorously with a sugar cube or two. The oils soak into the sugar cube and then you can crumble the sugar cube into the pear mixture.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2005 at 9:40AM
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CA Kate

OK... here's the report:

#1 I made the recipe as written.....
EXCEPT I thinly sliced 1 & 1/2 quartered small lemons (3/4c) instead of making chuncks.. Someone thought that might look better... and it does. The peel, pith and insides look nice and are sort of candied. The flavor of lemon is not strong.... just a nice back-note.

#2 After leaving the pre-heated mixture sit overnight in a stainless steel (non-reactive) kettle (trust me, a large sauce pan isn't big enough) I moved it to a stainless steel deep frying pan (chicken fryer) because I thought it would cook-down faster if it was shallower and had more surface evaporation space. It took less than an hour to reduce by 1/2.

#3 Since there weren't any directions to tell when this was suppose to be done, I watched for the bubbling to thicken, then I took it's temperature with my candy thermometer. When it got to 220º F I removed it from the heat. The consistency is perfect for a perserve.

#4 I ended up with 54 ounces of WONDERFUL perserves canned in 5 jars --- well, 4, now that we ate one.

I'm thinking about making more of this to give as gifts. Not only does it taste wonderful, it is also very pretty.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2005 at 6:24PM
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prairie_love(z3/4 ND)

Wow! Thank you SO much, Westelle. I may have to get more pears and try this now since I was scared to before :) I'm so glad to hear it worked out.

Ann

    Bookmark   November 20, 2005 at 8:28PM
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mellyofthesouth(9a FL)

Hey folks, When I was looked through the books for orange recipes, I ran across Gingered Pear Apricot Conserve. It has lime, pears, dried apricots, candied giner and slivered almonds. I'll type the rest if you'd like.

    Bookmark   November 23, 2005 at 4:29AM
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CA Kate

Melly: You've mentioned just about ALL my favorites - except chocolate. Please, add the recipe!

    Bookmark   November 23, 2005 at 5:05PM
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mellyofthesouth(9a FL)

You got it! It is from Small Batch Preserving. Everything I have made from this book has been good. I may have to make it myself.

Gingered Pear Apricot Conserve

1 large lime
4 cups finely chopeed peeled and cored pears (approx 4 lg)
1/2 cup water
2 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup chopped dried apricots
1/4 cup finely chopped candied or crystallized ginger
1/4 cup slivered almonds

1. Remove thin outer rind from lime with vegetable peeler and cut into fine strips with scissors or sharp knife; or use a zester. Remove and discard remaining white rind. Finely chope lime pulp with a knife or in a food processor with an on/off motion. Place lime rind and pulp in a stainless steel or enamel saucepan; add pears and water. Bring to a boil over high heat, cover and boil gently for 10 minutes or until fruit is tender.
2.Stir in sugar, apricots and ginger. Return to a boil, reduce heat and boil gently, uncovered, until the mixture will form a light gel, about 20 minutes, stirring occassionally. Remove from heat and stir in almonds.
3. Ladle into sterlized jars and process.
Makes 4 cups.

Westelle, You should go visit the raspberry chocolate jam thread. Enjoy, Melly

    Bookmark   November 23, 2005 at 5:39PM
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flatlander2

What kind of pear liquor did you use??

    Bookmark   October 3, 2006 at 7:05PM
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mellyofthesouth(9a FL)

I'd look for something in the brandy section. I have also seen pear "eau-de-vie". And you can also look for the word Williams. That is what they call a bartlett pear in europe. I like the idea of the amaretto or grand marnier that you mentioned in the other thread. I would go easy on those so as to not overwhelm the delicate pear flavor. You could just use a plain brandy also. I like Cuarenta Y Tres Licor 43. It is a brandy with 43 "elements" but the vanilla is the most dominant to me. I bought some to try making key lime pie "martinis". I had one once on the rare occassion that we go out and it tasted like key lime pie in a glass.

    Bookmark   October 4, 2006 at 6:44AM
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readinglady(z8 OR)

Melly, that brandy sounds wonderful. 43 elements. As a huge vanilla fan, I'm going to have to see if I can find that.

Speaking of pear brandy, here stateside I use Clear Creek Distillery Pear Brandy (Williams Pear on the neck of the bottle). This year I plan to use it in fruitcake.

Carol

    Bookmark   October 4, 2006 at 1:33PM
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Blueridgegirl11

Dear Carol,

I have two questions about this recipe, I just completed the 1st step.. can I refrigerate it for longer than 12 hours and finish it when I get off work which will have made it sit for 19 hours, second, can I can this and how long should the canning bath be?
thanks,
Laurie

    Bookmark   October 1, 2012 at 7:12PM
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readinglady(z8 OR)

Yes to both questions. Longer refrigeration won't hurt, and the lemon will assist in preservation of the color of the pears. Stir occasionally, if you get an opportunity.

Process 8 oz. jars 10 minutes in a boiling water bath. Jars should be clean and hot but sterilization isn't necessary.

Carol

    Bookmark   October 2, 2012 at 12:42AM
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