Saturday, September 10, 2011

Peach Butter

Mmmmmm.... soooooo glad I found this recipe on Smitten Kitchen! This is what my stovetop was up to all night long.

4 pounds peaches
1 cup water
2 cups granulated sugar
Juice of one lemon (or about 3 Tbsp lemon juice from the squeeze bottle)

Peel your peaches. You can just peel them with a knife, or you can cut a small "X" in the bottom of each peach, dip them into boiling water for about 30 seconds and then cold water for a minute and the peelings will come right off.

Halve your peaches and remove the pits, then cut each half into quarters. You should have 8 chunks from each peach. Place peach chunks and water in a large pot and bring to a boil. Simmer until peaches are tender, about 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure they cook evenly. You can then puree the peaches in a food processor, blender or with an immersion blender.

Return the peaches to the large pot, add the sugar and lemon juice and bring the mixture to a good strong simmer/gentle boil, cooking them at this level for 30 to 40 minutes, stirring occasionally in the beginning and more often near the end, as it thickens up and the fruit masses risk scorching on the bottom of the pot. (It actually took mine almost 50 minutes and even then it really didn't thicken until after I had turned off the heat.)

Let peach butter cool.

If you’re not canning it, keep it in an airtight container in the fridge. It should be good for at least two weeks. For example, I had just enough left over for my mom to snag some!

If you are going to can your peach butter:

First, sterilize your jars, either by boiling them in a large, deep pot of water (which should cover the jars completely) for 10 minutes or washing them in lots of hot soapy water, rinsing and drying the parts well and then place the jars only in a 200 degree oven for 20 minutes. Then, divide your hot piping hot peach butter between your jars, leaving a little room at the top. Wipe the rims clean with a dry towel and cover the jars with their lids. Submerge the jars in a large, deep pot of boiling water for 10 minutes, either in a removable basket or using tongs to dip and remove them. Let cool completely on towels, a process that can take overnight. If canned properly, the peach butter should last indefinitely at room temperature.

I was so fortunate. I cannot afford the "real" canning supplies. I had the jars and lids from my grandmother who did not have a use for them, a stockpot from my mom, and borrowed the canning basket from my friend Cindy. It turned out to be perfect and saved me a bunch of money. :)

This recipe is for my secret sister at church... but I still wanted to post it. Not sure if I can keep it a secret since I'm blogging about it though!!

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