Spiced Vanilla Pear Butter

Spiced Vanilla Pear Butter

If you are like me, gift giving is one of the very best parts of any holiday. The preparation, the fun of making it look pretty, the good feeling of giving. However, if you have a large number of people you are planning to give gifts to, planning what to give them can be difficult! That’s why it’s helpful to have “batch gifts” that you can give to pretty much anybody. And a jar of this Spiced Vanilla Pear Butter would be beautiful dressed up with some ribbon. Not only is it a lovely homemade offering, but it smells heavenly as it cooks down, filling your kitchen with homey and nostalgic aromas.

What on earth are we waiting for? Let’s make some! We are including two recipes here; a fast, easy version you can get done in an hour, and a slow-cooker version.

Crock-Pot Spiced Vanilla Pear Butter

Prep time: 10-12 hours

6 pounds Bartlett Pears, peeled, cored and quartered
1 vanilla bean, slit and scraped
2 cinnamon sticks
juice of 1 orange

Place all ingredients into the crock-pot, and let simmer on warm for 8 or 9 hours with the lid slightly ajar. Use a whisk to break up the pears; by then they should be fairly soft, and turn the heat up to high for 1 hour, or until the mixture thickens. Discard the vanilla bean and the cinnamon sticks, and transfer the pear butter to clean, warm canning jars. Put the lids and rings on, then dunk them in a hot water bath for 10 minutes. Ta-da! You’re done!

Stove-top Spiced Vanilla Pear Butter

3 pounds ripe Bartlett Pears, peeled, cored and diced
3 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
pinch of ground nutmeg
pinch of ground cloves
1/2 vanilla bean, slit and scraped

Stir all the ingredients together in a medium saucepan, and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer for about 50 minutes, covering so that the lid is slightly open, and stirring occasionally. Keep an eye on the mixture so that the bottom does not burn.

Once it has reduced slightly and thickened, remove from heat and whisk until smooth. Or, you could just skip this step to keep the pear butter chunky.

Transfer to canning jars or a heat-proof container, seal, and refrigerate until ready to use. Keep for up to a week once opened.