Another Farm to Pantry Recipe!
I’ve four recipes to share with you – 2 today and 2 soon after. That’s because we here in the Peach State want to hold onto these great tasting fruits as long as we can! The first two recipes are the easiest to make and really lend themselves to the juiciness that is peaches!
The first is Peach Butter, pure and simple – one of my husband’s favorites! And the second is just the first, with spices added: Spiced Peach Butter. Like my Rustic Apple Butter recipe, this one is made with the skins on – so no peeling needed. A real time saver! And I promise you won’t even know they are there.
It’s important to use organic or as natural peaches as you can, since you don’t want any residual pesticides in the jar. Watsonia, a South Carolina based grower, is now selling organic peaches in various markets and green markets throughout the Atlanta area. While Georgia hasn’t been able to come up with a successful way to grow fully organic yet (it has to do with the humidity), Pearson Peaches uses alternative methods and does as little chemical spraying as possible.
FYI, using the skins means you don’t need pectin to get a good set – and that means little or no added sugar. You really taste the peaches, not the sugar! Peaches are generally sweet enough on their own, especially if using them at their peak of ripeness.
As always mentioned, there are so many uses for fruit butters: besides toasts and biscuits, spoon into yogurt or oatmeal. As a glaze for pork or turkey. A great addition to goat and other mild cheeses for an appetizer or quick lunch on crostinis or crackers. I also like to mention that this is baby food in its purest state!
If you’d like to have the taste those juicy fresh summer peaches in the middle of January, make sure to put up extras for the winter! You’ll be so glad you did – and they’d also make great holiday gifting as well. I usually put up some in the small 4 oz. jars just for this purpose.
Makes about 5-6 Half-Pint Jars
4 pounds Peaches (firm, just at peak of ripeness, organic preferred)
Sugar to taste (organic raw sugar preferred)
Prepare for water bath canning by sterilizing jars and keeping them hot. Put flat lids in saucepan or heatproof bowl.
Bring to a boil over high heat. Continue cooking over medium heat until the peaches are very soft in texture, about 20 minutes. Puree mixture using an immersion blender or food processor. If using a food processor, return mixture to stockpot. Add sugar, if desired, to level of sweetness preferred (none is required, however).
Continue cooking, stirring frequently to prevent burning, until mixture reaches soft ball stage. You can test this by placing a spoonful of mixture on a plate. When cool, it should hold its shape, not run when the plate is tilted. This can take 1 or more hours, depending on the juiciness of the peaches.
Ladle boiling water from the canning pot into the bowl with the lids. Ladle hot peach mixture into the hot jars, leaving ½ inch headspace. Clean rims, place lids and bands. Place jars in water bath canner, making sure water covers jars by at least 1 inch. Bring to a boil and boil for 5 minutes to process. Remove jars to folded towel and leave undisturbed for 12 hours. After 1 hour, check lids for seal. Label jars and store in cool, dark place.
Spiced Peach Butter
Follow recipe as above. After pureeing, add the following spices:
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cloves
Continue with recipe as above.
Coming soon: Maple Bourbon Peach Butter and Pickled Peaches.