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Christopher Greaves

Bottled Pears

Red pears are $0.99 per pound, or per kilogram I never can remember which, so ...

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The pears are quite firm.

I slice off the top cm, including the stalk, quarter the pear, then remove the core segment. These off cuts will go into the empty 2-liter ice-cream tub visible to the left.

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Each segment is cut into three or four pieces so it will fit and settle comfortably into the size of jar I am using.

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The tallest jars will take just under three pears each. That jar has one pear, although the contents have not yet been shaken and settled.

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Once the seven jars are filled, I flood them with water then agitate them upside down, using my hand as a cover, to drain out all the bits of blossom, grit or whatever else has fallen in.

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Each jar receives a half-cup of white sugar, regardless of the jar's size.

Small jars will taste sweeter than large jars.

Since the pears were quite firm I judge them not ripe-sweet, so that extra sugar is called for.

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Lids: I use lid plates with rings. Each plate is rinsed under the tap before being place don the jar. Any sugar grains that had settled on the rim will be dissolved by the water and will give me a firm seal, I hope.

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The rings are screwed on, and seven jars make a snug fit in my boiler.

I used to worry about jars cracking through vibration. I used to place folded newspaper or a sheet of cardboard in the tub to protect the jars, but tired of that after 10 years. I haven't lost a jar to vibration yet.

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And the pear off cuts? If you were into it you could use them to make perry, but I double-bag them, freeze them, then plant them in tubs.

Theory is enough of the seeds will sprout to make a half-dozen pear trees next spring.


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Toronto, Friday, August 14, 2015 1:03 PM

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