My canning this year started with some pepper jelly, wowza. Pepper jelly is simple to make and does not require a pressure canner, just a hot water bath canner (or a large heavy pot). We have just a few jalapeno plants in our garden this year, but the production is prolific so we have canned some, given away many, dehydrated some and giving away more! We bought some heirloom seeds early this spring so we could harvest some seeds for next year as well as build our seed stock.
A sweet family on a little country road I travel frequently has pear tree in their front yard which produced some really beautiful pears last year. I found myself wanting to stop and ask if I could buy some, or trade something for some of their fruit. I never did. But this year when the tree started producing I stopped by and asked. The sweet couple heartily agreed and was just pleased that someone wanted to do something with them. They had already canned as many as they were going to can for the year. I agreed to trade them fresh farm eggs for several weeks, they of course were willing to just give me the pears for nothing at all. I know that Mrs. K is grateful for the eggs as she has called me on several occasions to say just that, but I still feel like I got the BEST end of that deal.
My mother makes some of the best pear preserves ever!!! So I got her recipe and did my best to replicate her preserves (of course she doesn't have a recipe...). I suppose I came close enough. I also made pear relish, pear butter, pear sauce, and cranberry pear chutney, oh and I put some in the freezer for pies as well!