One thing I enjoy to do in the summer is to can what I grow in my garden. Nothing quite says summer like peaches. Sadly we don’t have a peach tree, but we have a produce stand not far from our house that sells some delicious peaches every year. We are a family that can eat peaches. Whole fruit form, canned halves, in cobblers and our favorite form, peach butter. This is very similar in consistency with apple butter only from peaches.
Peach butter can have many uses. Some of our favorites are to put it on toast, ice cream or vanilla yogurt to jazz it up. If you have never canned before don’t be intimidated. It’s fairly easy and this recipe simply requires a hot water bath, no scary/finicky pressure to worry about.
Before starting to can anything it’s always important to make sure your produce is in the freshest form.
Once you have selected fresh, ripe peaches, the next step is peeling. 4 1/2 pounds of peaches need peeled for this recipe to be exact. The easiest way to mass peel peaches? Put them in boiling water for a minute or so then plunge in to cold water. The skins will come of in large sheets. Once peeled, halve or quarter and remove the pits.
Now comes the fun part. Busting out the food processor. The recipe says to leave this a little coarse, but we like to puree the peaches to make a nice smooth butter. This is where you can use your own preference.
Now you need to measure out 8 cups of the puree. If you have extra left over peach puree goes with about anything. I made sure to save the littlest tribe member some for baby food. Yes, I’m the cheap mom who makes her own baby food.
Next you add in 4 cups of sugar, 1/2 cups of water and a tablespoon of lemon juice. Then you cook and cook and cook. The mixture should cook until it has reduced enough to hold it’s shape on a spoon. This needs stirred frequently so it doesn’t scorch. No one wants to eat burnt peaches.
While cooking your puree, you also need to be warming your jars, lids and rings. Remember to thoroughly wash all of your supplies before you use them.
Now you can start filling your jars, leaving a quarter inch head space. Once your jars are full, wipe the tops with a damp towel to remove any butter drippings. Place on lids and rings, tighten. Once filled, place the jar back in to the canner.
With your canner all filled up it’s time to make sure all your lids are covered with water. Place the lid on to the canner and process in a hot water bath for 10 minutes. Remove the lid and wait an additional 5 minutes before taking the jars out.
- 4 1/2 pounds peaches, pitted and chopped (or pureed)/ this comes to 8 cups of puree needed
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
- 4 cups granulated sugar
In a large sauce pan (I like my dutch oven) combine peaches, water, lemon and sugar. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, stirring frequently. Reduce heat and boil gently until mixture holds shape on a spoon.
Meanwhile, prepare jars, lids and rings.
Ladle the hot butter in to 8 oz jelly jars (makes 8) or 16 oz pint jars (makes 4). Leave 1/4 inch head space. Wipe rim and place on lid and ring. Tighten until slight resistance is met and rings are finger tip tight.
Place jars in the canner, make sure they are completely covered in water. Bring to a boil and process for 10 minutes. Remove the lid and allow to sit for an additional 5 minutes. Cool and store. Remember to only store jars with “popped” lids. Any unprocessed peach butter will store in the fridge for a few weeks.