I’m in full Christmas-prep-mode! Not in the decorating sense yet, because decorating before Thanksgiving is just.not.right. But I’m making most of the gifts I’m giving this year, because Student Loans, so I’m getting a jump on the gift-making process!
I actually started planning this summer, when my job was whoa light and I had lots of time between emails asking me to do things. This meant Pinterest happened. And DIY blogs happened. And trips to Hobby Lobby and Michael’s happened. I’d forgotten how much fun it is to make something that lasts longer than a meal*!
Edible gifts will be on the to-do list as well, naturally, and that’s where today’s subject comes in. For a-project-yet-to-be-divulged (oh, you got me, I can’t keep a secret, it’s this), I had to buy pear juice at the store. And it turns out this is both straight-forward and complicated, as many new ingredient quests are.
Pear juice is straight-forward in that the likelihood of your typical grocery store carrying more than one kind is a bit slim. I was thinking I might have a little selection, but nope, the 100% organic stuff was the only option. That’s cool, I like 100% and organic, but it wasn’t really something I had to have for this recipe.
But walk to the end of the (enormous!) juice aisle, and you will find individual cans. “How convenient!,” you think. “And here they have pear! …Nectar. They have pear nectar. …What is pear nectar? …Oh it’s 38 cents a can, yeah, okay, well we’re getting it, whatever it is.”
Which then means you get home with copious amounts of pear-flavored liquid. Sample time!
The tiny amount** of web-research I did makes it sound like to call a product “juice” it has to contain 100% fruit juice. That doesn’t sound entirely right to me, since plenty of drinks marketed as juice (though I suppose they may technically call it something else, fruit beverage or something I’m sure) don’t contain that percentage. But nectar appears to be a term you can use for drinks that contain, well, fruit and then almost anything else.
But how do they taste!?
Oh, Kaki, the pear juice. The pear juice is just luscious, there is no other way to describe it. It is slightly thick and velvety smooth. Just thinking about it now I went and poured myself a glass. It’s delicious!
The pear nectar was good, too, though. Sweeter than the 100% juice, and thinner consistency; they both contained some level of sediment but the nectar had much less. I kept sipping the nectar thinking, “This is good! It tastes a little like… apple juice!” Duh, check the label, Caitlin; sure enough, contains apple juice!
Neither are really great for you, nutritionally speaking. The biggest difference is the sugar per serving, which is 29g for the juice and 45g for the nectar. Well, and the price is a pretty big difference. The can was 38 cents. The bottle (equivalent to 4 cans) was $3. Still, these will be gifts (if the recipe works!), so I think I’ll shell out for the juice.
Frankly, you could probably combine the two with good results, especially since the recipe in question calls for added sugar. Maybe I’ll make a per-recipe batch and an experiment batch!
Can’t wait to tell you how it turns out!
*Or at most the week it takes me to eat the 9×13 pan of that meal. I need to start some kind of meal-swap.
P.S. I mentioned trying out a cardamom-pear syrup to Kelli the other day, and before I could get the words “champagne cocktail” out, she had mentioned, “Oh, like for over ice cream?” Um, yes for over ice cream! Gosh, this recipe had better turn out now that I’ve got such big plans for it. It had better be better than my last cardamom infusion incident!