This year was the first year I have attempted to can peaches. Mainly because I shudder at the thought of peeling all of that skin off. It's not as easy as it looks. Peaches have to be ripe. They have to be dropped into boiling water for 30 seconds then, plunged into an ice bath. Skins should just peal right off! Sure.......
I struggled with getting the skin off, but I managed to get enough peaches done that I canned 4 quarts. Then I gave up.
The rest I threw into my juicer and put the lid on. Easy peasy! This is more my speed!
No boiling, plunging, or peeling necessary!
I was able to get 4 quarts of juice.
We took the remaining peaches that were in the juicer and placed them in the dehydrator. The steamer had pretty much removed all of the juice from the peaches so, we were left with just the "meat". We sprinkled some cinnamon on them and made peach jerky. It tasted like peach fruit leather to be more specific. We were happy not to have to waste anything. Every bit was used.
Ok, back to those difficult peaches I mentioned in the beginning; I canned my peaches (the ones I actually peeled) in a light syrup. They were already sweet so, I didn't want a thick syrup.
To keep the peaches from browning I placed them in a bath of ice water and (3 lemons) freshly squeezed lemon juice right after I had peeled them.
When it was time to can them I dropped the now sliced peaches into the light syrup which consisted of 2 cups sugar/6 cups water in a sauce pot on the stove which I had brought to almost a boil. I kept them in the syrup for 3 or 4 minutes then ladled them into hot sterilized jars.
I hot water bathed them for 20 minutes.
We had some today. The kids just couldn't wait. They were delicious! Worth all of the pain and suffering!
Now, I will use the juice to make peach jelly at a later time. I'm thinking winter time when things have slowed down a lot!
I used a 1/2 bushel of peaches for this canning adventure. (Some were eaten ahead of time!;)) I'm sure next year will be better now that I know what to expect.
We will cherish our canned peaches when the snow is thick on the ground and summer is no where in sight!
Have you canned peaches? If so, tell us about your experience! Was it easy or difficult to get that skin off? Any tips would be welcomed as well!
P.S. I have to apologize for the lack of pictures during this process BUT, I had juice covered hands, juice dripping down my arms, bowls of ice water, bowls of lemon water, bowls of sliced peaches, juice going, and peaches in syrup, and people on their way over to pick up another pig! It wasn't pretty, but it was real life.
"He that followeth after righteousness and mercy findeth life, righteousness, and honour." Proverbs 21:21