Monday, September 12, 2011

Preserving Summer

Let me start off with this: These are real peaches.  Gorgeous, glistening, perfectly ripe peaches.  If this photo doesn't say "August," then I don't know what would!

You have noticed my foray into preserving Summer and I think this will be my biggest success.  I decided to try the freezing method, as I think that will keep the fruit closest to right off the tree fresh.

First I washed and sterilized jars in the dishwasher and simmered the lids in a pan of water.  Then I cut an "X" in the bottom of each peach and blanched it in hot water, then scooped it out of the hot water and into an ice bath to prevent further cooking.  This method helps the skin to release and you can see the results above - perfectly peeled peaches. 

I then sliced the peaches into a large bowl and sprinkled them with Fruit Fresh, to preserve their color and prevent browning.

I dissolved 1 cup of sugar in 2 cups water and brought it to a boil.  Pack the peach slices into the jars (leaving about an inch for expansion in freezer) and pour syrup over them (make sure there is still an inch of room for expansion).  Jiggle contents with a wooden skewer or narrow tool, to release any trapped air bubbles.

Wipe rim clean.  Place clean lid onto jar.  Screw band on tight and freeze!

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