Monday, September 13, 2010

September & Peaches

September is one of my most favorite times of the year. Kids get excited to start school, all their sports games and concerts start, you get to enjoy the weather of warm sun with a cool breeze and in our house we start listening to Christmas music!
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The other joy of September for me is canning. I don't have a clue why I love it as much as I do, but I guess it just gives me such a sense of accomplishment to see all those jars of homemade lovin sitting on top of my counter at the end of the day. Listening to the lids seal and pop makes me smile.
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One of my most favorite things to can are peaches! I have already done Raspberry Peach Jam (I'll do another post on that one!) so today I did peach pie filling and frozen peaches in syrup. I can't even tell you how yummy the pie filling makes my house smell.
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I have a few peach tricks up my sleeve so I wanted to do a post and share!
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First off, I pick my peaches and put them into several brown paper bags for 2-3 days. This is a must for the way I do peaches. Something about that brown bag makes their juices plentiful and they ripen and soften in those 2-3 days.
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For today, I filled up my small sink with water to make sure they were all clean and bug free before I started!
The #1 reason to LOVE the brown bag way is they do NOT need to be blanched.
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Blanching is a great method for a lot of fruits and veggies, but with peaches I HATE IT. I think you loose TONS of the sweetness and juices as they boil out. If that is your favorite way, it still works, for me, we use the brown bag and then cut em in half like this!
The peaches will be perfectly ripe and without any water or trouble the skin will peel right off
If I have a peach that is being a little tricky, I will use either a pearing knife or my avocado peeler to help it along, then slice the peach.
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 I get 4 slices out of each half
Then just keep going until all those yummy peaches are in slices!

Now its time to make the filling!
You need sugar, water, cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon juice and cornstarch
Bring to a slow boil and whisk so cornstarch isn't clumpy
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Then add those peaches!
Then boil  for about 5 minutes or until thick!
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The smell of this is SO divine!
Then put your filling in jars and water bath 30 minutes after boiling!

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Isn't that a beautiful sight?!?

 This goes super yummy with pie obviously but I LOVE it over cheesecake! Ooo or pancakes, waffles... Hope it inspires you! ;)

Canned Peach Pie Filling
5 Cups sliced peaches
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 C water
3/4 C sugar
2 Tbs lemon juice
3 Tbs cornstarch

Mix all but peaches in pot and bring to a slow boil. Add peaches and simmer 5 mins or until thickened. Pour into mason jars. Water bath 30 minutes! Each recipe makes about 2 pints or 1 quart.

***In photos above I tripled the recipe***

0 compliments to the chef: