A time for Jam . . .
To my faithful readers: I apologize for the lack of posts nearly all year long. But, alas, it is never too late to post something new. So I give you my recipe for Peach and Raspberry Jam Preserves before peach season ends this month. I spent Labor Day weekend doing some simple waterbath canning. It isn't that hard and it is a handy way to give life to your old ripening fruit.
For this recipe you will need:
Set of 12 wide mouth smal canning jars, with bands and lids (recipe makes about 10 jars)
Large pot to boil jars in
Tongs to lift hot jars out of water (or just by a canning kit from your grocer)
For the jam:
3 lb peeled and cut peaches
1 lb raspberries (rinsed and dried)
1 1/2 c sugar
1 small packet of pectin (optional)
1/2 c Apple Juice
Cut the fruit and place in a large sauce pot, add sugar, pectin, and juice. Cook over medium-high heat until fruit softens; mash fruit with a potato masher, then cook on higher heat stirring often, for 10 minutes. As you boil the fruit, you are cooking off excess moisture which is key to the consistency of the preserves.
In another large pot, boil about half a pot of water. Sterilize your jars by boiling them, along with the lids and bands, for 10 minutes. Dry on a clean towel.
Ladle the cooked fruit preserves into wide mouth jars. For this process, my mom had a handy little funnel that fit the mouth of the jars perfectly, and she had a magnetic utensil to pick up the lids with. I highly recommend these tools because they made the job faster and got it done cleaner. You can buy canning kits at any grocery store, or if you prefer, go to the Ball canning website here, and check out their Ball Utensil Set: http://www.freshpreserving.com/
Once you've got the jam in the jars, place the lids on each jar (I prefer the lids to be boiled and dryed off quickly before placing on jars to maximize their stick). Then tighten the bands around the jars, but just be "finger tight" -- you don't want a bulldozer tight lid (the gasses from the fruit are released which cause the jars to seal).
Place the sealed jars in boiling water for about 15 minutes (about 3 inches of water should cover the jars). Pull jars out of the water using your canning tongs, and let sit on the counter for about 6 hours. You will hear a popping noise as the jars seal. Any jars that don't seal should not be preserved for eating. Store in a cool and dark place. Once opened, keep preserves in the fridge.
I recommend that if this is your first time canning, or you would like new ideas about modern food canning, you read Eugenia Bone's book Well Preserved
. She is an Italian chef in New York City that cans in her own apartment in small batches every year. Her tips and insights are amazing, as well as her canning recipes.
Labels: canning, fall, jam, peaches, preserves