I ran across a pear tree recently that was overburden with fruits. So much so that a lot of the branches had broken and were hanging down. Since no one seemed interested in the fruit and so many were already laying on the ground, I asked if I could pick some.
They weren’t quite ripe, so I put them in brown paper sacks (6 to 8 pears in each bag), rolled the tops down, and then let them sit until they started ripening. I check them every few days, and as they ripen, I peel and cut them up to put in the freezer.
This is the best way I have found to freeze both apples and pears so they don’t turn brown. (Unfortunately the lighting in my kitchen and my wood countertop casts a tint on the pears in the photo)
How to Freeze Apples and Pears
Sprinkle enough regular table salt in the bottom of a large bowl or container, then half fill the bowl with water. As you cut up the apples or pears, drop the pieces in the salt water.
When the bowl is full, drain the fruit well, without rinsing. Fill freezer bags or freezer containers in recipe-size portions. (See note below) I prefer to use freezer bags, because they freeze flat, which later thaws quicker than a block of frozen fruit.
Note: Most pie recipes call for 5 cups of cut-up apples or pears, while a cake can be anywhere from 1 ½ to 4 cups. During each “cutting up fruit” session, I put two cups in each freezer bag. The final bag holds whatever is left, which usually ends up being 1 or 1 ½ cup.
Then freeze until ready to use.
Surprisingly, the fruit doesn’t taste salty after the salt water bath. Maybe a little bit when first removed from the water, but not after freezing.
I’ll be sharing a couple of recipes using pears soon! Until then . . .