peach butter

oh hello! my absence from this little space can only be explained by saying "I've been too busy to cook!" well, actually no. that's a lie. I've been cooking, just nothing exciting! if you follow me on Unruly Things, you probably know who dlb is and that he's been out of town for 6 weeks! well my friends, he comes home today. and because of his homecoming, I've been baking...a lot.
let's back up a second. living in Portland has really given me the opportunity to buy and eat lots of fresh produce. I've gone to the farmers market many times and brought home fresh carrots, beets and apples for my juicer, onions, garlic and basil for pizza, and berries to snack on. I've been to the local farms where I've picked pounds and pounds of marionberries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries. but until yesterday, I had never picked a peach. and I came home with 15lbs of fuzzy, fresh, juicy peaches.
after canning 7 jars, I sat at my computer debating what to make next. my recent obsession with Vanilla Pear Butter lead me on a search for a recipe for Peach Butter. after browsing a few sites, and figuring I could sort of wing it, this is what results. Enjoy!
Peach Butter

I only filled up three 8oz jars with this recipe, so it could easily be doubled to fill up more jars.

about 10 ripe peaches, peeled, halved, pitted
2 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp water
2 tbsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp allspice
dash vanilla
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 cup agave nectar or honey

:: for peaches ::
• wash the peaches. cut out any brown spots and peel the peaches. to easily remove the skin, immerse the peaches in boiling water for 30 to 60 seconds. remove from the boiling water and immediately place them in a bowl of ice water. slip the skins off the peaches.
• place the peeled and pitted peaches, lemon juice, and water into a stockpot or very large saucepan. bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer for about 10 minutes, or until the peaches are softened, stirring frequently. remove from heat and let cool, then place the cooked peaches in a food processor or blender. puree until smooth.

:: for butter ::
• pour the pureed peach mixture back into the saucepan. bring to a boil while stirring constantly. reduce heat to low. Stir in the cinnamon, allspice and vanilla. simmer the mixture, uncovered*, for 2 or more hours or until it thickens to the consistency of applesauce or apple butter, stirring often.
*once the butter starts to thicken, it will splatter outside of the pot. make sure to take anything away from area, or cover counters to avoid splattering everything.

:: prepare jars for preserving ::
• when butter has 10-15 minutes remaining, prepare jars for preserving.
• submerge jars into a bath of boiling water for 5 mins. remove from heat and leave jars in hot water until ready to fill.
• spoon the peach butter into hot half pint canning jars. fill to within 1/2 inch from the top of the jars. wipe the jar rims clean and place the caps and rings on the jars.
• place the filled jars in a boiling water bath canner with the water level about one inch above the top of the jars. process half pint jars in a boiling water bath for 10 minutes. if using pint jars, process in a boiling water bath for 15 minutes.

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