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  • FoodSaver V3240 Vertical Vacuum Sealer, White
    FoodSaver V3240 Vertical Vacuum Sealer, White
    FoodSaver
    I just started using a FoodSaver vacuum sealer to seal foods and I can't believe I waited so long to get one. (Check out my first project: Sweet & Sour Green Bean Freezer Pickles!)
    For example: In the past I would take the time to pick beautiful berries, then would bring them home and stick them in a zippered baggie in the freezer. My berries would have ice crystals and taste freezer burnt after just a few short months. 
    Then I had a light-bulb moment: "Air is the enemy" of freshness. 
    When vacuum-sealed my berries last 3 to 4 times longer! I have similar results with other fruits, veggies and even meats & cheeses.
    The FoodSaver has been a fantastic discovery. ~ Brook
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    • Mehu-Liisa 10 Liter Stainless Steel Steam Juicer - Made in Finland
      Mehu-Liisa 10 Liter Stainless Steel Steam Juicer - Made in Finland
      Mehu-Liisa Products

      Some day I will replace my ancient graniteware Steam Juice Extractor with this gorgeous Mehu-Liisa brand Steam Juicer. My old Steam Juicer leaks steam, meaning I have to refill the water often, and it doesn't have anywhere close to the capacity of this one from Mehu-Liisa.
      If you want to experience the magic of a Steam Juicer, check out this 10 quart Mehu-Liisa. It will last you a lifetime and save you countless hours in the kitchen, whether your juicing fruit for  Plum Jelly or Apricot Nectar, not to mention it minimizes the mess of juicing large amounts of veggies!  ~ Brook

    • Ball Quilted Jelly Canning Jar 4 Oz (Pack of 12)
      Ball Quilted Jelly Canning Jar 4 Oz (Pack of 12)
      Ball
      What's the one jar size I always keep a couple extra cases of? 
      The Ball 4 ounce jar.
      It's basically 1/2 cup, and just the right size for gift-giving and for experimenting with small batches. Perfect for things like my famous Pear Honey.
      People can't help but say "That is so darn cute!" when they seem them. 
      ~ Brook

    • Presto 01781 23-Quart Pressure Canner and Cooker
      Presto 01781 23-Quart Pressure Canner and Cooker
      Presto
      Looking for an affordable, easy-to-use pressure canner, backed up by great customer service? Look no further than the Presto 23 quart Pressure Canner/Cooker. It's the one I recommend to all my students. ~ Brook

     

    Dilly Pickled Onion Slices on Punk Domestics

    • Splash-Proof Super-Fast Thermapen (Orange) Instant Read Thermometer, Perfect for Barbecue, Home and Professional Cooking
      Splash-Proof Super-Fast Thermapen (Orange) Instant Read Thermometer, Perfect for Barbecue, Home and Professional Cooking
      ThermoWorks
      Do you have a great instant-read thermometer, or are you still buying the 20 dollar ones that only last a year or two? This was one of my best kitchen purchases.
      Can't imagine cooking jam (or meat or candy) without it! 
      Take your jams to 220º and you'll have a perfect gel set every time. Also available in other colors, but why wouldn't you want orange? It's only the BEST COLOR EVER. ~ Brook

     

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    • The Home Preserving Bible (Living Free Guides)
      The Home Preserving Bible (Living Free Guides)
      by Carole Cancler
      If you're looking for a book that covers every preserving topic imaginable, this is the book for you. It doesn't have a flashy cover or glossy pictures, but it's full of great info. One of my very favorite resources. ~ Brook

    • OXO Good Grips Corn Stripper
      OXO Good Grips Corn Stripper
      OXO

      Last August my friend Kelli asked me if I wanted some fresh corn from her grandpa's garden. I said "Sure....I'd love to make a few jars of Sweet Corn Relish!"
      She showed up 6 hours later with 158 ears. Wasn't sure if I loved her or hated her for it.
      After a long hot day spent cutting kernels off all those cobs with a small paring knife, I decided I'd never be without a Corn Stripper again. ~ Brook

     

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    I have attempted to share safe preserving methods however you alone are responsible for your health & safety in your own kitchen or location. Be aware of current safety recommendations. Please see "Full Disclaimer" page for suggested preserving resources.

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    International Food Blogger Conference 2011 NOLA

    « Bosc Pear-Cranberry-Orange Sauce | Main | Brown Sugar~Pear Butter »
    Saturday
    Oct292011

    Lemony-Ginger Pear Preserves

        Use green unripe (or slightly ripe) Bartlett pears for this recipe. You want the pears to hold their shape not only when they're shredded, but when they're in the preserving pan and in the jar....and later, on your toast!

    These 4 flavors are so intriguing together. The subtle sweetness of pears are exactly what's needed to deliver the sweet-tart spicy delight of lemons & ginger combined.  If you like lemons and love ginger, you're going to absolutely adore these pretty preserves.

        And guess what? As is the case with most of my preserving recipes....no pectin necessary!

    Makes ~ 4 half pints

    • 2 lbs (about 4) green, mostly unripe Bartlett pears
    • 2 lemons, zested & juiced (approx. 1/3 cup of juice)
    • 2 cups granulated sugar
    • 2/3 cup candied/crystallized ginger root, coarsely chopped  (4 ounces)

     Note: Prepare lemons first, because you'll want to be able to pour the lemon juice over the pears (in the preserving pan) as soon as possible after you shred them to prevent oxidation. Oxidation is what causes browning, which isn't harmful, but you still want to prevent it for flavor, texture and esthetic reasons.

    Next prepare canning jars and keep hot until ready to use; prepare lids according to the manufacturer's instructions. 

    1.) Zest lemons, and set aside lemon zest, then squeeze juice from lemons. Tip: Rolling the lemons on the counter firmly before juicing will soften them and enable you to extract the most juice.

    2.) Wash, then quarter and core pears, and run them through the food processor fitted with a shredding blade. (If you are going to double this recipe, either work very quickly or do this in two separate batches to prevent the shredded pears from browning before you can get them into the preserving pan and combined with the lemon juice.)

    3.) Combine pears, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a heavy-bottom non-reactive pan, then add sugar and chopped ginger. Stir together just enough to combine all ingredients.

    4.) While stirring gently, bring to a boil over medium-high heat just until sugar is dissolved, which should only take a few minutes, then reduce heat to a simmer.

    5.) Simmer for approximately 20-30 minutes, or until pears have softened slightly but the syrup has thickened. You want the shredded pears to still be a bit firm so they hold their shape in the preserves.

    6.) Once desired thickness has been achieved, remove the preserving pan from the heat then spoon mixture immediately into hot sterilized jars, leaving 1/4" headspace if you plan to seal them in jars, or 1" headspace if you plan to freeze them instead.

    7.) Look for any air bubbles in the jars and if you see any, use a chopstick or plastic knife to pop them, then wipe rims of jars spotlessly clean.


    8. At this point you can cover jars with tight-fitting lids and either :

    a.) store in the refrigerator for up to 3 months or

     b.) store in the freezer for up to 6 months or

    c.) you can create a shelf-stable preserve that won't need refrigeration by processing. Just follow the next 2 steps:

    11.) Wipe rims clean, place lids atop jars, then screw on bands until they're finger-tight.

    12.) Process for 10 minutes in a Boiling Water Bath.


    Find more delicious pear recipes at USA Pears!

    Step-by-step photos of the Lemony-Ginger Pear Preserves process

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