The word PEACHES always makes me think of this song:
Probably because Dan starts singing it whenever I say ‘peaches.’ You can imagine, then, what I got stuck in my head yesterday…
As I mentioned in my post on canning, my most recent canning endeavors involve peaches. I found local (but not organic) peaches at our co-op for $1.59 a pound this week...what a steal!
I’ve also been on a fruit butter kick. Fruit butters are basically concentrated, cooked down fruit purees with some spices or sweeteners added. I love the creamy smoothness of apple and pumpkin butter, but it is hard to find such spreads made of other fruits…unless you make them yourself! Plus, they are super easy to make, and require much less attention and babysitting than jams or jellies do. Though I’ll admit, I still haven’t tried to make jelly myself, mostly because fruit butters are just too good!
I know, I promised this recipe yesterday. However, I was not 100% happy with the flavor of the first batch, so I decided to make a second batch, tweaking the recipe.
Now it is perfect! When I can, my goal is to keep the jars sealed until well after the fruit’s season has passed. Luckily, there is always a little extra that doesn’t fill a whole jar, so I have some to eat right away! I ate the extra peach butter straight up with a spoon this morning. It is that good.
- 4 1/2 pounds peaches (about 9-10 large peaches)
- 3/4 c honey
- 2 T white tea of your choosing: I used Ginger Peach White from Cha Cha Tea (optional)
- 1/2 c brown sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground cloves
- Optional: Wrap the tea leaves in a cheesecloth or jelly bag, and press into the honey to allow the tea flavor to infuse into it. Do this an hour or so in advance of your canning, but you could even do this the night before! Press the tea out of the cloth/bag, and discard the leaves (or make a cup of tea!). The tea is optional. I liked the extra touch of flavor it added, but you can skip the tea if you'd like!
- Wash, pit and chop all peaches. Most recipes call for removing the skins because of their texture, but I elected to leave them on. It saves a lot of hassle, and everything is going to be blended and creamy by the end anyways!
- Fill a crockpot with the peaches. Cover and set the temperature to High for one hour. Using an immersion blender, puree the peach mixture until it is relatively smooth. It doesn't have to be perfect-- you'll puree them further later! Add the honey, brown sugar, cinnamon and cloves, and decrease the heat to Low.
- Tilt the lid at an angle so that steam can escape and the butter will reduce. Allow to cook down for 11-14 hours, until it is reduced by half. At this point, the fruit butter should be thick enough to mound up on the backside of a spoon without flowing off.
- About 45 minutes before the butter is done, wash all the jars and lids (not the rings, though) in hot soapy water. Put them on the rack of your canning pot, cover with hot water, and place over high heat on the stove until right before you are ready to can.
- Go ahead and give the peach butter a whir with the immersion blender to make sure it is super smooth and creamy. Follow the canning instructions found here (don't forget to adjust for altitude if you need to!), leaving 1/4" headspace in each half-pint jar. Process in the canning pot for 20 minutes.
- Make sure to leave this headspace (empty air space) in the jars. The peach butter will expand during processing, then contract and create a vacuum as it cools later.