This is it, the last bit of canning I have to do. And boy am I glad it's over, for this year. I know that in Spring, as I'm planting seeds, I'll be once again an impatient gardener, wanting my veg and fruit to hurry up and grow so I can get busy canning and preserving...
My backyard pears have finally ripened enough to use. I would like to leave them on the tree a little longer but if I do the bears very likely will get them before me.
Last year I made pears in syrup..hmm..not my favorite. This year I'm trying Pear Mincemeat, it tastes delicious and smell even better. I can't wait to use it in tarts.
Here is the recipe from the Ball Complete Book of home preserving.
1cup dried currants
1cup sultana raisins
1/2cup coarsely chopped dried apricots
Grated zest and juice of one lemon and one orange
1/2cup lightly packed brown sugar
2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground ginger
pinch of salt
10cups chopped cored peeled pears
1 cup slivered blanched almonds
1/4cup rum (optional) Mandatory for me
In a large stainless steel saucepan, combine currants, raisins, apricots, lemon and orange zest and juice, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt. Fold in pears, being careful not break or bruise them. Bring to boil over a medium high heat. Lower heat, cover and boil gently, stirring occasionally for 30 minutes, until slightly thickened. Uncover and cook stirring occasionally, until think enough to mound on a spoon, about 15 minutes. Add almonds and rum and boil gently for 5 minutes.
Just blended mincemeat After 30 minutes
Ladle hot mincemeat into hot jars, leaving 1/2 inch head space, Remove air bubbles, wipe rim, center lid and screw band.
Place jars in canner, ensuring they are completely covered with water. Bring to boil and process for 20minutes. Remove canner lid, wait 5 minutes, then remove jars, cool and store.
For information on using boiling water canners safely please click here; http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/publications/uga/using_bw_canners.html