Second only to watermelon, peaches are my favorite summer fruit. But, I don’t usually enjoy the cardboard flavored grocery store peaches; I long for the tree-ripened fresh peaches from east Texas. This week I found some at a fruit stand and bought half a bushel.
Yesterday I made peach jam.
I wanted to make some peach jam anyway, cause it’s one of my favorite types of jam, but I needed some in a hurry for a batch of thumbprint cookies for a dinner party. So, I got out my fruit pectin, lemon juice and sugar and set to slicing peaches!
To Peel or Not to Peel?
It’s important to me to use as much of the fruit as possible when I cook, but I wasn’t sure if peach skins would be something I should leave in for the jam. I went ahead and simmered the slices with the skins on, knowing they would loosen naturally and be very easy to pick out if needed. Turns out they got really soft, so I left them in. When I blended the peaches the skins liquified like the flesh and no one would ever know they were in there. I think the skins also give the jam a much deeper color and I like that!
This really simple peach refrigerator jam turned out perfectly and the dinner guests raved over the cookies topped with it and my blueberry refrigerator jam. This morning the kids and I enjoyed our peach jam on toast and English muffins while I drank a big glass of peach and bell pepper juice.
- 5 or 6 peaches
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 4 tablespoons fruit pectin
- Slice the peaches and remove the pits. Place in a sauce pan with the lemon juice and cook over medium low, stirring occasionally to prevent burning. When the peaches are starting to get mushy remove from heat.
- Blend the fruit on high until completely smooth.
- Pectin tends to clump, so mix it with the sugar.
- Turn the blender down to medium so you don't splash hot fruit puree on yourself and slowly add the sugar and pectin mixture while blending. You need to do this slowly and while the puree is still very hot so the sugar and pectin dissolve.
- You can use clean glass jars or plastic storage containers! I used some of each. Refrigerate right away and store in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.
- You can make this without sugar. I almost did, but because I planned to use it on cookies I wanted this batch to be a little sweeter. If you want to sweeten with fruit, try adding a little white grape juice concentrate. It doesn't have much color or flavor but is very sweet!