Peach Jam (no pectin)

It’s Canning Week at Simple Bites, so I’m linking up there and sharing a recent canning experience…

Having two young kids in our house = A LOT of jam & preserves consumption…

And while we could keep Smucker’s in business for the next eighteen years, I figure they’ll do just fine without us, and so, I make our own jam.  I much rather prefer the taste of my homemade preserves, and this way, I get to control what goes into them.

So a few weeks ago, I had a 1/2 bushel of organic peaches show up at the front door from our local grocer, love KTC!, and they were so yummy and delish, juicy and fresh!

But, I had no fruit pectin in the house and to be honest, I was bound & determined to not buy any. The first ingredient is typically maltdextrin or dextrose. Now granted, those are not the worst types of sugars to put into your body. But sometimes, a girl just wants it au natural! My grandma didn’t have artificial pectin to put in her peach jam, so I was pretty sure I could find a way to make do without. And girl, did I ever! You simply need time. Not something we always have on our side these days, but its pretty neat to make something the same way your grandparents did.

(And, I simply KNOW you are wondering…pectin is a naturally occurring substance found in fruit which is what makes the jam ‘set’ or reach the desired gelling consistency. Foregoing artificial pectin (for fruits with very low natural pectin) requires more cooking time prior to canning, but it also reduce the amount of sugar called for. So really, a plus plus scenario! No artificial crapness & less sugar!)

Okay, now back to reality and a simple recipe you can make at home yourself!

Peach Jam

Ingredients
1/2 bushel ripe peaches
3 cups organic sugar
1 cup honey

Yields ~ 9 half pints

First off, you’ll need to peel the peaches first and I promise, its not as hard as you may think. Simply score an ‘x’ on the underside of each knife and place into a roiling boil of water. After 30-60 seconds you’ll see the skin start to peel away from this ‘x’. Plunge peaches into ice cold water and the peel will be super easy to remove.

I need a video here to show you how easy it is, but just trust me!

Place quartered peaches into a food processor and blend until slightly pureed.

This is where I begin to fall in love, all over again, with my NINJA processor. Oh wait, I never fell out of love with it! It is my go-to kitchen appliance. I LOVE IT!!!

Now add your sugar & honey. And then pour yourself a glass of chilled white wine.

You’ll need the wine, since this next process takes an hour plus, but once again, worth it to not have to use store bought pectin. When you begin the process the consistency looks pretty soupy and runny.

Foam will begin to appear but after 15-20 minutes the foam will begin to disappear. You can also skim off if desired. That is too much work for me, so I just leave it!

In about an hour and fifteen minutes, you will have a thick and gelled consistency. Notice, it’s so thick that it has a hard time getting through the slots in the spoon. This is the consistency you are looking for.

Ladle into hot jars, leaving 1/4″ headspace. Cover with lids & rings. And then process for 10 minutes in a hot water bath.

For complete canning process tips, I recommend Ball’s online guide.

Thanks for humoring my no pectin kick! I definitely use pectin at times but sometimes it’s neat to do something the oooolllllld school way.

So what’s been your favorite canning recipe this summer?

Happy Canning!

Jess

~~~

Peach Jam
Yields ~ 9 half pints

Ingredients

1/2 bushel peaches
3 cups organic sugar
1 cup honey

Preparation

Fill a heavy stockpot with water and bring to a roiling boil. Nearby, place a large bowl filled half full with very cold ice water. Score an ‘x’ on the bottom of each peach.

Blanche peaches for 30-60 seconds in boiling water and then plunge into the ice water. Once slightly cooled, remove skin from peach, pull apart from the stone pit, and place into a food processor or blender. Once all peaches have been peeled, chop the peaches, in processor, until chunky or slightly pureed.

Place chopped peaches into a heavy stockpot, adding sugar and honey. Bring to a slow boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer for approximately one hour and fifteen minutes; until jam has reach desired gelling ‘set’ consistency. Stir every few minutes while it cooks. Also, approximately ten to fifteen minutes into the simmering process, you can (optional) remove foam from the top of mixture with a metal slotted spoon.

Once desired consistency is reached, ladle hot jam into hot, sterilized half-pint canning jars, leaving a 1/4 inch headspace.  Wipe jar rims and cover with lids & rings. Process filled jars in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes.

*Note* I was extremely exhausted when I began this recipe and ended up only getting 1/2 of the peaches peeled and chopped before calling it a night. To retain the bright peach color overnight, I put a few teaspoons of asorbic acid (vitamin C powder) in with the pureed mix and refrigerated until I could begin again the next morning. I am happy to report, the color stayed beautiful and the taste was unaltered. 

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Comments

  1. Colleen K. says:

    Mmm, can I get one of those :)? Peach jam is my absolute favorite! I miss Gram’s.

    • Lucky you, you live in Charleston! I will absolutely share some jam with you. We have SO much jam and I’m still trying to use up the berry jam I made last fall. I’ll bring some of the jam to the birthday festivities!
      Jess

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