Tis The Season...no not Christmas silly...Canning Season!! Posted on 24 Aug 12:28 , 3 comments
It's that time of year when everything is delicious, ripe and beautiful here in California! Or as I like to call it "Canning season!" Between the middle of August and beginning of September it seems that everything gets ripe all at the same time, so it's a busy time of the year in my little kitchen. Who am I kidding, in my kitchen it's always busy time...but anyways. The first thing I make is peach jam. People always ask me why I can things. First of all, there is nothing like opening up a jar of peach jam in the winter. It tastes like a little bit of heaven on a piece of toast or English muffin. Heck, my friend Kali eats it out of the jar with a spoon. And it's so much better than store bought, I like to know exactly what I'm eating, I like my food in glass, it's an old fashion tradition that I like to keep alive and it's so satisfying to see the fruits of my labors in my pantry when it's all done. I truly love it. I can't help it I just do!
I thought it would be fun to share with you how I make peach jam, so you could try it too! Here's what you're gonna need for one batch.
8 -1/2 pint jars and lids
6-7 delicious, ripe, juicy, organic peaches, you better get 8 or 9 because you're gonna want to eat a couple! I use peaches I get at Blum Ranch. Click here for link.
7 cups sugar (yes that's right! Don't use less it won't work)
1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
Large pot for jam
A steam canner. I use steam canner here's a link. It's a lot easier than water bath.
One batch makes about 7 or 8 -1/2 pint jars.
Here we go...
First put on some good music. Super important.
Now, prepare your jars and lids. You have to sterilize your jars. I use the dishwasher. Or you can steam in the steam canner for 10 minutes. Put your lids and bands in a pan, cover with water and turn it on low, just bring to a simmer. Keep on low until you're ready to use.
Now to get the peaches ready. Wash, peel and pit your peaches.
Then chop them up until you have 4 cups. Mash it down to make sure it's 4 full cups. I like chunks of fruit in mine. If you don't like it chunky you can run it through the blender to make a puree. Sprinkle with Fruit Fresh or lemon juice to prevent browning.
Put into your pot and add sugar and lemon juice & mix together.
Turn on the stove on low and it will start to liquefy and look like this...
Bring to a boil and let boil one minute. Then add two packs of Certo and bring back to a boil and boil 1 minute.
Turn off heat and let sit a minute or two then skim the foam off the top. This is not my favorite step. My daughter loves doing it.
Keep skimming until it looks like this... Might take a few minutes and it seems like you're wasting some precious jam but trust me it's worth it. All the impurities are in that foam so you don't want it in your jam. Plus it looks weird and ugly! No one wants to eat that!
Get your clean jars out and put them on a dry towel. Ladle your jam in your jars. I use a funnel it keeps the jars cleaner and causes less spills. Fill to about 1/2 inch from the top.
Wipe the rims of your jars with a paper towel saturated with vinegar. It cuts right through the sticky sugar. Put on the the lids and bands. I have a lid remover, it's pretty handy. It has a magnet on the bottom makes it easier to get the lids out of the hot water.
Put them on your steam canner. Fill the bottom of the canner with hot water. Put on lid. You can do this step earlier and have it all ready to go.
Turn on high, when the steam starts pouring out of the little hole in the front, set the timer for 10 minutes.
When done, wait a few minutes remove lid away from you, the steam is hot and remove the jars and remove jars and place on dry towel.
Let cool 24 hours. Remove rings and wash!
Now you have delicious home made jam. Go make a piece of toast or grab a spoon, put your feet up and enjoy! It's so good!