I spy….my kitchen counter again finally!
It’s been a few weeks now that I’ve had my head stuck in the canning pot but I’m almost out! The last two weekends I’ve gotten 36 pounds of amazing peaches from Rama Farms at the UW farmer’s market. They should have them at least through next weekend and are also in West Seattle on Sundays and Columbia City on Wednesdays if you have the chance.
I never used to really like peaches but it turned out I had just never eaten a Rama peach. I’m a full blown convert now!
Here is what I’ve done with them:
Canned in a light syrup of 1 cup sugar to 1 quart water, heated until the sugar is dissolved. Sometimes I’ve added a vanilla bean to the syrup, othertimes I’ve added a cinammon stick and a few whole cloves to the jar of peaches. Peel, pit and slice peaches, load them into the jar packing tightly then ladle in the syrup to 1/2″ from the top of the jar. Add a lid and ring and process for 10 minutes in a water bath.
Peel and pit 6 pounds of peaches then cut them into roughly 1″ pieces in the food processer. Add them to a nonreactive pot along with 6 cups of sugar and 3/4 cup of lemon juice. Cook it, stirring occasionally, for about 30 minutes until it thickens to your liking. Ladle into sterilized pint or 1/2 pint sized canning jars to 1/2″ from the top of the jar. Add a lid and ring and process for 10 minutes in a water bath. Makes 6 pints or 12 half pints.
My family can’t get enough of this for breakfast, on fresh biscuits with ham slices, on ice cream, stirred into plain yogurt or as filling for Swedish Pancakes.
Chop into 1/2″ pieces:
1 cup of red onions
2 – 6 jalapenos depending on the size and heat level you like
1 red bell pepper
Finely chop 3 cloves of garlic
Add those to a non-reactive pan along with 1/2 cup of Rockridge Orchard apple cider vinegar, 2 teaspoons cumin, 1/2 teaspoon cayenne and 1/4 teaspoon sea salt. Cook about 5 minutes until the vegetables begin to soften.
Peel, pit and slice 6 cups of peaches into 1″ pieces. Add them to the pot and cook, stirring for about a minute to meld everything. By adding the peaches at the end of the cooking they will retain their size, texture and color.
Ladle the mixture into sterilized pint sized jars and process for 10 minutes in a water bath. Makes about 3 pints. When you open this in the winter you can freshen it with some fresh lime juice and cilantro if desired. This is a super yummy way to eat peaches without adding sugar! It would be great served with any grilled fish or chicken, Indian bean dish or curry in addition to using it as a dip.
1/2 cup red onion
1/4 cup green pepper
Add them to a non-reactive pot along with 1/2 cup sugar, 3 tablespoons Rockridge Orchard apple cider, 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger, 1 slice finely chopped candied ginger or grated fresh ginger, 1/4 teaspoon turmeric, 1/8 teaspoon cloves. Cook, stirring until the vegetables begin to soften.
Peel, pit and slice into 1/2″ cubes about 2 cups of peaches. Add them to the mix and cook, stirring for a moment or two to meld everything. Ladle into sterilized pint jars to within 1/2″ of the top then process for 10 minutes in a water bath.
This chutney is great with grilled fish or chicken or along with any Indian curry or rice dish as well. Because of the sugar if would make an interesting combination paired with angel food cake & vanilla ice cream.
Peel, pit and slice peaches. Dip into lemon water to help keep them from browning. Load up the dehydrater and dry until no juice comes out when you squeeze the slices. I store these in glass jars in the fridge or freezer since I don’t use any sulfur on them. They should keep 6 months in the fridge if they last that long. My kids can’t get enough of these but I’m limiting their intake because we all know what too many peaches will do to you output. I’m just saying.
Peach Fruit Leather
Peel, pit and slice peaches. Place them in the bowl of a food processer and add lemon juice to prevent browning. Whiz until no visible chunks remain. Add an equal amount of applesauce for structure and texture. Pour onto fruit leather trays and load up the dehydrator. These may take 24 hours but they taste amazing. I roll them up and store them in glass jars in the fridge. These too should last about 6 months in the fridge or longer in the freezer.
Frozen Peach Slices
Peel, pit and slice peaches. Load into a freezer Ziplock or other freezer safe container. Squeeze as much air out as possible then place them in the back of your freezer where it is colder. They will keep in your freezer through winter.
We use these for smoothies now that we don’t buy bananas (the addition of frozen fruit will give it that creamy, thick texture and the peaches will naturall sweeten them.)
I also will be making peach cobbler over the winter from these frozen beauties, although the peaches canned so well that they are almost as perfect as they were fresh so I may use some canned peaches for cobblers too.
Once I got too tired of processing and strapped for freezer space I ran the peeled, pitted peaches through my Roma food mill and froze the juice. If we run out of peach jam I can make jelly from this, I can reduce it into sauces (like barbecue sauce for instance), or I can make popsicles or ice cream base out of it.
My standby crips recipe can be used with just about any fruit. I fill a pyrex dish with fruit, add sugar to taste, a few tablespoons of instant tapioca and few tablespoons of lemon juice. Mix the fruit well.
In a food processer add 1/2 cup of soft wheat or spelt flour, 1/8 cup of oat flour if you have it (you can make this by grinding oatmeal in a coffee grinder if you don’t grind your own grain), dash salt, dash cinnamon (nutmeg for rhubarb). Pulse to mix all the dry ingredients well.
Add 6-8 tablespoons of butter cut up (depending on how decadent you feel.) Pulse just until the largest butter pieces are the size of large peas. Add 1/2 cup oatmeal and 1/4 cup slivered nuts if you like nuts. Pulse for several seconds just to distribute the oats and nuts but not so long as to chop them up.
Spread the topping over the fruit and bake in the oven at 350 until the mixture begins to bubble. This could be about 45 minutes depending on how full your baking dish is and how many other things are in your oven.
Serve warm with Snickerdoodle Ice Cream. In my humble opinion any crisp, pie or crumble containing cinnamon should be served this way.