Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Peach Cobbler Jam (Small Batch)

Sometimes I do not wish to procure 14 pounds of cherries to make 8 quarts of preserves.  I understand that most canning recipes are made for large quantities because that's how most gardeners receive their produce.  It's nothing, nothing, nothing, nothing, BLUEBERRIES, BLACKBERRIES, TOMATOES, CUCUMBERS, can it all now before it goes bad!  So yeah, I get it.

However I also realize that some people are canning the luscious fruits and veggies that they're getting from local farmers markets, grocery stores, and even generous neighbors' gardens.  These outlets don't always provide the sheer amount that a generic canning recipe calls for.  I can relate.

We actually have peach trees in our back yard, but we planted them in April of last year, so they're not producing much yet.  Hubs was on his way out the door the other morning when he turned around and came back.  He handed me a grocery bag of peaches and said, "Here."  Thanks for the explanation, dear.  Anyway I don't know where they came from, but they were so ripe that they were mostly red.  I decided to make some delicious jam!  Here's a smaller recipe that won't break the bank (4 Cups of peaches, roughly a dozen smaller ones).

Use the ripest peaches available.  You can see these are mostly red on the outside.  Since they're so ripe, I leave the skins on.  They lend so much flavor to the jam, and once it's all jelled up, they're really not that noticeable.  If you decide to opt out on the skins, that's cool too, but you may need to reduce the overall sugar by 1/4 cup or so.

Add 1/2 cup of sugar and squeeze half of a lemon over the peaches.  Give it one good stir, just to get the sugar all over the peaches.  Let them sit in the fridge until...

They look about like this.  An hour or two should do the trick.

Okay, so stick all those peaches and juice in a pot with 3/4 C of sugar and squeeze the other half of the lemon.  Bring it to a boil and stir occasionally.  Be careful not to scorch it, reduce heat if you need to.  I left mine at a boil for about 25 minutes.  When it starts to get near the end of the time, add the vanilla and cinnamon.  You can kind of do this to taste, just don't burn the crap out of your tongue like I did.  You can mostly do it by smell, to be honest.

Boiled down a good bit.  Ready to can!  Okay I think you probably know the drill on how to get it in the jars and water bath by now.  (And if you don't, I'm working on a post with a simple jam recipe to give a really good dummies guide.  Not that you're a dummy...)  Process for 10 minutes in half pints.

Here's the beauties!  They're delicious.  Taste just like peach cobbler!  I'm working on a recipe for peach cobbler cookies using this jam.  Delish!

Peach Cobbler Jam

-4 C diced peaches
-1/2 C sugar
-1 lemon
-3/4 C sugar
-1/2-1 tbsp vanilla
-1/4 tsp cinnamon

1.  Wash and dice the peaches.  Pour 1/2 C sugar and squeeze half of lemon over the fruit and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.
2.  Combine peaches with remaining sugar and other half of the lemon juice in a pot and bring to a rapid boil.  Boil for 25 minutes or until the peaches have reached their jelling point.  Add the vanilla and cinnamon to taste.
3.  Ladle jam into sterilized half pint jars and process in a water bath for ten minutes.
4.  Remove and let cool.  And enjoy!!!

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