August 9, 2014

Peaches

The past few years I've been taking a trip to Utah in the late summer. One reason I like to go that time of year is for the peaches. Overall Utah has THE best peaches, ever, in the world. They are also very good for canning and freezing. This year I knew I wouldn't make it down there so I decided to buy a box of peaches elsewhere, not really knowing much about different peaches. I guess I bought "cling" peaches, and not "free stone" peaches. The difference is this: cling peaches  do not come away from their pit easily, or at all. With free stone peaches the pit isn't even attached much to the peach.

So here's my kitchen set up. Box of peaches, hot boiling water- boil peaches 2 minutes to make peels come off easier. Tool to take peaches out of boiling water and place into cold water. Bag with peach peels and knife. Peaches in the sink in cold water. After they've cooled a bit, peel them and put them in the big bowl of cold water with fruit preserver so they don't turn brown. Everyone got that? Read again if you didn't follow me.

So I'm buzzing along with my process when I turn to the peeled peaches to take the pit out. The first one squishes completely. I try another, squished. I'm like "what the heck?!" I soon realize these peaches will not make a pretty jar of canned peaches. I tried slicing them. Ugh, not pretty either. So I come up with this idea to make peach sauce, like apple sauce. I cut around the pit as much as possible, throw them all in the blender with some fruit preserver and put the slurry on the stove top to get hot. 
If you've read how to can apricots then you know the process from here. Hot fruit goes into hot jars. Wipe top of jar. Hot lids go onto hot jars. Hot jars go into hot water bath canner for 15 minutes, for peach sauce. 

I must say it turned out pretty tasty. I had some leftover, so I froze it in paper cups with a popsicle stick. It was delicious! The kids loved it and now I have something new for their lunch boxes. I think I'll freeze it in small containers, pull them out and put with their lunches as I send the them off to school. By the time lunch rolls around it will still be a slushy treat!

So next time something isn't what you thought it was going to be, make it into something new you've never tried before. You may find you like it even better. I know I'm adding this to my permanent canning recipes!
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