Sweet pears and tart cranberries transform themselves into a velvety smooth spread in no time with this easy small batch fruit butter recipe.
While apples and pumpkins are undoubtedly the stars of the fall season, it’s also around this time of year that cranberries and pears reach their peak.
Of course cranberries get plenty of love in the form of sauce for our holiday tables but other than that their potential is left overlooked. And while pears are certainly easier to eat and appreciate outside of the holidays, they often take a backseat to apples when it comes to recipes. Take fruit butters for example where the apple and pumpkin varieties reign supreme, which is a shame since naturally sweet pears make a delicious fruit butter, especially when paired with cranberries.
Fall is the ideal time to make fruit butter. It’s the time of year when we do a lot of giving and receiving and a homemade jar of fruit butter is always appreciated. It’s also nice to have a jar on hand in the fridge to spread on pancakes, waffles and muffins, or just to swirl into yogurt or ice cream. The possibilities are really limitless.
The great thing about making fruit butter is that they don’t require any fussy equipment for jam making like thermometers or canning equipment. There’s also no pectin involved or any guessing about whether your jam has set properly. You just cook the fruit down until it’s thick, velvety and spreadable.
The only tricky bit is that most fruit butter recipes can require anywhere from 3 hours to all day to make! This is not one of those recipes; this festive colored cranberry pear butter comes together in about an hour with very little hands on cooking time.
Rather than cooking the fruit down first before putting it through a food mill, sweetening it, and returning it to the stove to thicken, you simply blitz everything together in the blender or food processor first and then let it all bubble away on the stove, stirring occasionally until it thickens and transforms itself into fruit butter.
While tart cranberries and sweet pears is a delicious combination on its own, I like to add a strip of lemon peel for brightness but you can also opt for a stick of cinnamon or a vanilla bean if you’d prefer. Dress it up however you choose, this cranberry pear butter tastes like fall in a jar.