Back when your great grand-pappy was a kid, trudging twenty-five miles to school everyday in the snow after rising from his cot at 3:15 a.m. and putting in a full day’s work, they didn’t have fancy things like “caramel” or “microwaves.” No sirree, they cooked up sugar, corn syrup, water and food coloring to make old fashioned candied apples and pears. If they were feeling wild, they might have added a touch of cinnamon flavoring.
I personally wanted to leave this particular tradition in the past, but Alexa insisted we take a trip down memory lane and I obliged due to the fact that we were turning her new condo into a candied pear factory.
The candied pears actually turned out gorgeous, and don’t taste too shabby either! Here’s what you do to make old fashioned candied pears:
Combine 1 cup sugar, 1/3 cup corn syrup, 1/3 cup water and red food coloring in a small saucepan over medium heat. You can also add red hots or other cinnamon candies if you want. Cook the mixture until the sugar dissolves, stirring occasionally. After the sugar dissolves, continue cooking without stirring until a candy thermometer reaches 300° (about 8 minutes). Remove from heat and start dipping your pears into the syrup. We actually dipped our pears 3-4 times each, cooling between coats. If the syrup thickens you can always reheat it and keep coating.
Make sure you let these babies rest on wax paper before you arrange them on a serving plate.