Last weekend when I was at our local orchard, I picked up a 5# bag of utility Bartlett pears for $1.75. I couldn't pass up that deal. They weren't the prettiest pears I've seen, but I figured we would eat them right up. Well, even though they looked ripe, they were quite hard. I tried ripening them on the counter, but they just started rotting at the core. So, I got busy and decided they would make excellent Pear Butter. Now, I have never made Pear Butter before, but I made Apple Butter with my mom one year. I got on the Internet and got a recipe that sounded good. I tweaked it a little and this is what I came up with.
4 lbs of pears cored and chopped
1/2 - 1 cup sugar (depending on how sweet you want it.)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup white grape juice
Place cut pears in slow cooker with 1/2 c water. Cook on high 6-7 hours or until soft. (You could do this quicker on the stove, but I was busy with school and couldn't keep an eye on it so I went for the ease of the slow cooker.) Once soft run it through a food mill. (I then placed it in the fridge to finish it up the next day.)
Place pulp in a large stock pot add sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and juice. Cook on low heat until mixture is thick and molds to spoon. (This took about 3 hours.) Place in hot jars, clean rims, place on lids and bands. Hot water bath for 10 minutes. Yields about 3 pints.
I used half-pint jars, skipped the hot water bath and placed them in my freezer.
We will be enjoying this on our toast on chilly winter mornings or as a snack after a invigorating afternoon of sledding!