Mama's Pear Preserves
Diane Hopson Smith
I love the syrup in these preserves as much as I love the pears.
My mother put up pear preserves every year. Her cousin provided the pears every year (from her trees) until the year my mom pasted away.
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- pears, peeled and sliced then
1Peel, core and slice pears. Place in large bowl and cover with sugar. Let set overnight or 6 to 8 hours.
2When ready to cook; slowly cook over low to medium heat until the syrup thickens and turns an amber color. This will take a few hours. You can test the syrup by dropping a little on a plate; tilt plate to see if it is thick like syrup and not runny like water.
3As soon as the amber color occurs and the syrup is thick enough, spoon/ladle the pears and syrup into clean jars; tighten lids. As the jars cool they will seal.
4My mom never did processed her preserves in a hot water bath but I do:
Start by sterilizing jars and lids. This takes a little while, so I start this 1st. I place my clean jars in my canner and cover with hot water. Bring this to a boil and boil for at least 10 minutes. Remove jars when ready to use. Pour some of the boiling water from jars back into canner and keep the water boiling so you will be ready to process jars of jam. In another small pot; sterilize lids in gently boiling water.
Ladle hot jam into hot sterilized jars, leaving 1/4-inch headspace. Wipe rims of the jars, cover with lids, and screw bands on until just barely tight. Place jars on rack in pot and cover completely with boiling water. Cover pot; boil over high heat for 10 minutes. Turn off heat, uncover pot, and allow jars to rest in water for five minutes. Remove jars from pot and allow them to rest undisturbed on countertop for six hours or overnight. Preserved jam will keep for up to one year in a cool, dark place. Unpreserved jam will keep in the refrigerator for about six months.