One of my best friends went to her grandma’s house the other day to pick pears. Pick pears she did. Tiffani called to tell me she had picked “a gazillion” pears and wanted to know did I some. Sure! This was my first time ever really doing anything with pears, but it was fun, I decided to do something a bit unusual. I put Hot Tamales candy in them. Keep reading.
When I found out I was getting the pears, I called my parents and asked if they had any recipes for canning pears. They’ve done a lot of canning. They hadn’t, but my mom had recently read an article in The Times-Picayune that had a lot of different pear recipes. One was for pink pears and it sounded interesting, since it utilized the candy Red Hots as a flavoring agent. There were no Red Hots at Kroger so I figured Hot Tamales would do the same basic thing. The pears remind me in looks of pickled ginger that you get with sushi. But it’s got a great cinnamon flavor, it’s really delicious! And it’s more fun than just regular pear preserves.
Recipe adapted from: The Times-Picayune
5.5 lbs. peeled, cored and sliced pears (the weight is of what is left after its peeled, cored and sliced!)
3 cups water
2 cups white granulated sugar
1 cup Hot Tamales candy
In a large pot, heat the water and sugar over medium heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Add the candy and stir until the candy melts. Add the pears, stirring and folding until they are well coated with the red sugar mixture. Cook at a simmer until the pears are very tender, but still hold their shape.
To can, fill a large canning pot with water, bring to a boil. Add the jars and allow them to sit in the boiling water to sterilize. In a smaller pot of water over medium-low heat, add the flat lids. Fill the sterilized jars with preserves, make sure the rim is wiped clean (a wide-mouth canning funnel helps keep it clean) and place one of the hot flat lids on top. Place the ring on, tighten to just fingertip tight. Place all filled jars in the boiling water, cover and allow to process for 20 minutes. Remove from water (with canning tongs) and listen for them to “pop”, indicating that the processing was successful. Store in the pantry until ready to eat.