Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Our Day of Canning ~ Peaches ~ Recipes Included

Joseph and I spent several hours a few weeks ago canning peaches.  Our house smelled wonderful!  Our friend Mike has a fantastic peach tree in his back yard and offered all the fruit to us.  We accepted his offer and got to work.  Check out the process. . .

To help the skins peel nicely first cut an X at the bottom of your peach.
Place a few peaches at a time in boiling water for just a few minutes.
Then place the peaches in an ice water bath to cool them off.
We had just a few peaches to peel don't you think.

Peeled and sliced, ready to be put into bottles!
Once peaches are bottled add the simple syrup.

We made spiced peaches so the syrup is cooked with whole cloves and cinnamon sticks.

Peaches are ready for their bath now!

Honey - Peach butter cooking.

Bottled food is really pretty I think.
We had about six pounds of grapes we didn't want to waste so we decided to make a small batch of grape jelly.  Joseph found a recipe online; he threw in a few of his own special touches as well, ginger and garam masala.

Skinned and cooking down on the stove.

Bottled and ready for their bath! 
Spiced Peaches Recipe:
5 1/4 cups water
2 1/4 cups sugar
12 whole cloves
2  3 to 4 inch cinnamon sticks
8 to 10 pounds ripe peaches.

*Adjust syrup recipe to the amount of peaches you have...  I tripled our recipe.

For the syrup, in a 4 to 6 quart heavy pot, combine the 5 1/4 cups water, sugar, cloves, and cinnamon sticks.  Bring to boiling, stirring until sugar dissolves; reduce heat.  Simmer uncovered for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Cool for 30 minutes.  With a slotted spoon, remove and discard cinnamon sticks, if desired remove cloves from syrup too.  Set syrup aside.

For the peaches, remove the skin and the pit and slice.  To prevent discoloration, place peach slices immediately into ascorbic-acid color keeper solution.  Pack peach slices into hot, sterilized quart canning jars, leaving a 1/2 inch headspace.  Return syrup to boiling.  Ladle hot syrup into jars, covering peaches and maintaining the 1/2 inch headspace.  Remove air bubbles, wipe jar rims, adjust lids.

Process filled jars in a boiling water canner for 25 minutes (start timer when water returns to boiling).
Make sure to adjust water bath time based on your altitude. 

*recipe makes 5 quarts.

Honey-Peach Butter Recipe:
18 medium ripe peaches, peeled, pitted, and cut up.
1/4 cup water
2 1/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup honey

In an 8 to 10 quart heavy pot, combine peaches and the water.  Bring to boiling; reduce heat.  Simmer covered, for 10 to 15 minutes or until peaches are tender.  Remove from heat, cool slightly.  Use blender to puree peach mixture, in batches or if you have an immersion blender that works well too.  Return peach puree to same pot.  Add sugar and honey.  Bring to boiling, stirring until sugar dissolves; reduce heat.  Simmer, uncovered for about 10 minutes or until mixture is thick and mounds on a spoon.

Ladle hot butter into hot, sterilized half-pint canning jars leaving a 1/4 inch headspace.  Process filled jars in a boiling water canner for 5 minutes.
Make sure to adjust water bath time based on your altitude. 

*recipe makes 4 half-pints.

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