The farmer’s markets are full of peaches right now, a little past their prime which is perfect for jam-making. Last Saturday I bought a big box of peaches for $16 and made 3 batches of jam on Sunday as they had ripened so fast as to be almost spoiling – two of freezer jam and one the old-fashioned boiled on the stove way.
Unlike last year, where I experimented with different types of pectin, I just used the Bernardin No Sugar Needed brand as I don’t like jam to be too sweet, although I did add 2/3 of a cup of sugar as the package insert suggested. I like to be able to taste the peaches. Of course there is nothing so lovely as a big bowl of peaches peeled and sliced on their own, or mixed with some vanilla yogurt.
I woke up with a sore right shoulder (probably from carrying the box), so I recruited my mother to help peel the peaches, which she enjoyed very much as it reminded her of all the canning she did on the farm. My nostalgia for homemade jam was one of the memories which lead to the creation of the homeplace blog (see Out in The Country).
For more canning memories, you can check out last fall’s unpublished blogs, Jamfest and Lavender and Pears, (although it is not quite pear season yet).
Peach jam is best served in January during a blizzard while looking out the window at two feet of snow and dreaming of summer….
(200 words – almost makes up for the last weeks 4000)