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 Perfect for gift giving, these fragrant preserved pears have a beautiful golden hue.

Makes 4 (500 mL) jars

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 You can reuse the vanilla beans from the jars to make vanilla sugar. Rinse and dry vanilla beans. Add to 2 cups (500 mL) of granulated sugar and let steep for 1 week.



5 lb ripe Ontario pears 2.5 kg
1 lemon
1 1/4 cup granulated sugar 300 mL
1/4 tsp saffron 1 mL
2 vanilla beans, cut in half, widthwise
4 thin slices lemon


 Place clean jars and screw bands in a boiling water fitted with a metal canning rack. Cover with water. Bring to a boil; boil for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand in hot water until needed.

Bring a saucepan of water to a boil; remove from heat. Place seal lids in saucepan, let stand in hot water for at least 5 minutes or until ready to use. Jars, bands and lids must be kept hot until ready to fill

Wash, peel, quarter and core pears. Add to bowl of water with lemon juice to prevent browning. Meanwhile, combine 2 1/2 cups (625 mL) water and sugar in a large saucepan set over medium-high heat. Boil for 5 minutes, or until the sugar is completely dissolved.

Drain pears from lemon water; discard lemon water. Place pears and saffron in saucepan; return to a full boil and boil for 1 minute. Fill the jars with pears. Add half vanilla bean and a lemon slice to each jar. Strain the syrup over the pears leaving 1/2-inch (1 cm) headspace from the top of the jar.

Insert a non-metallic utensil to remove any air bubbles. Add more syrup to raise level and maintain a 1/2-inch (1 cm) headspace. Wipe the jar rims with a clean paper towel to remove any food residue. Center the hot lids on the clean rims and screw on the bands until resistance is met, then increase to fingertip tight.

Return the filled jars to the canner and ensure the jars are covered with at least 1-inch (5 cm) of water. Cover the canner and bring to a full boil. Boil the jars for 20 minutes, starting the time from when the water returns to a full boil.

After boiling, lift the jars slightly so that the lids are exposed above the water, wait 5 minutes and carefully lift the jars from the canner. Place them on a cooling rack or a flat surface lined with a towel. Cool undisturbed for 24 hours. Do not retighten the lids. While the jars cool you will hear popping sounds and the lids should curve downwards. This indicates that the seal has formed. If the jars fail to seal, refrigerate and consume within 1 week.

Label and store in a cool dark place. Use within 1 year.

Nutritional Info

 PER SERVING (1/2 cup): about 122 cal, 0.5g pro, 0.5g total fat ( 0g sat fat), 32g carb, 3.5g fibre, 0mg chol, 0mg sodium. % RDI: 0.5% vitamin A, 9% vitamin C, 1.5% calcium, 1.5% iron.

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