Friday, August 19, 2011

When Life Gives You Peaches...

...cook 'em and can 'em!

Here's a step-by-step to making peach jam (this time I made Lady Grey tea-infused jam, recipe from Bon Appetit):

Boil the peaches whole for 1 minute to loosen the skins

Take them out and put then in a cold water bath for another few minutes
Take off the skin with a paring knife, and also cut off any imperfections or bruised parts

They should look nice and shiny afterward!

Take out the pits and cut the peaches. The left ones are cut into inch-sized chunks for peach butter, the right ones are cut much smaller for jam.
I made about 8 cups (4 pints) of peach butter with 14 peaches, and 6 cups (3 pints) of jam with 8 peaches. My how-to on peach butter can be found {here}.
Add 2T of lemon juice, 21/2 cups of sugar, a pkg of fruit pectin, 1T butter, (and 4 Lady Grey or Earl Grey teabags, for a little extra flavor). Bring it to a rolling boil and cook until it sets up - about 30 minutes.
I use Ball Fruit Pectin. Check out their site for canning at this {link}.
Ladle the cooked jam into hot jars (I stick mine in the dishwasher on sanitize).

Top with self-sealing lids that have been kept hot in simmering water. Then process the filled jars in boiling water for 5-10 minutes. Remove with tongs because the hot jars will burn you!

Let rest on dry tea towels until cooled.
These will be perfect gifts for the holidays. I love getting things done early. For a procrastinator like me, this was quite an accomplishment. And so much fun too!

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