Canned peaches are an excellent treat – especially if you’ve canned them yourself and can control what goes into them. The downside to most canning recipes is the amount of sugar involved. Peaches are naturally sweet, so they don’t need a lot of additional refined white sugar, which is bad for you anyway. This recipe utilizes a more natural combination of honey and cinnamon to enhance the natural flavors of the peaches.
- Water bath canner
- Canning jars and lids
- Cutting board
- Measuring implements
- Peaches – a good measurement is between two and three pounds of them per quart-sized jar
- One cup of honey
- Nine cups of water
- One cinnamon stick for each jar
1) Prepare the peaches.
- This includes peeling them and slicing them into quarters. Peeling is made easier by dunking the peaches in a pan full of boiling water.
- Let them soak in there for two minutes, then place them immediately in a pan filled with cold water. The skins will come off on their own, although you might need to wield the peeler to remove any stubborn bits.
- Once they’ve been peeled, slice them in half and remove the pit. Then slice them into quarters.
2) Pour the nine cups of water into the saucepan. Add the one cup of honey. Then, slowly bring the temperature up until the mixture is boiling. Allow it to boil while you finish slicing the peaches and preparing the canning jars.
3) Prepare your water bath canner.
4) Place one cinnamon stick inside each canning jar. They’ll dissolve once the hot water has been added, infusing your peaches with a sweet, cinnamon flavor.
5) Add the sliced peaches to each jar, making sure to leave an inch of space at the top.
6) Pour the boiling honey water mixture into each jar over the peaches and cinnamon. Leave one-half inch of space at the top.
7) Seal each jar carefully and place in the water bath canner. Process them according to the instructions on your canner.
Before you begin canning your peaches, there are some things that you need to do. For example, you should prepare the jars according to the instructions on the package. This usually involves washing them and allowing them to dry thoroughly before you go ahead and begin using them.
Also, you should never reuse the lids and bands. You can reuse the jars all you want, they’ll last for many seasons (or rounds of canned peaches) as long as they aren’t cracked or chipped. However, the lids and bands must be new every time. If you reuse them, you run the risk of the jars not sealing properly, allowing in contaminants.
Once you’ve processed your jars of peaches, store them in a cool, dark place, such as a pantry, basement shelf or root cellar. If any of the lids haven’t “popped” properly (and you’ll know when they do this), place the jar in your refrigerator and begin eating it right away. Those unpopped jars won’t last, as the seal didn’t set.
Water bath canning is a great method for making things like jams, jellies, pickles, and even canned fruit. You shouldn’t attempt to use this canning method for vegetables and things like meat. The temperatures don’t get hot enough and are too unstable to process those items correctly. If you want to make canned vegetables and meat sauces, you’ll need a pressure canner. This is a completely different device that is much more stable. If you’re new to canning, stick with the water bath method for now. It’s a great gateway point for homesteaders.
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