Last summer, I got an invitation from a friend to come pick peaches (read about it here). It was a great deal of fun and the end result was baskets of peaches.
I ate my fill of fresh ones, which were about the size of large apricots, and still had plenty left to cook or preserve.
Ah, there’s the thing. How does one preserve peaches? My only knowledge of canned peaches was from a delightful old movie called “Holiday Inn” with Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire. Bing’s character decides to go live the country life and one of his endeavors was canning peaches to give away as gifts. He proudly presents them to Fred and company, only to have each jar explode like a cannon shot.
I opted to freeze my bounty.
This recipe is a slight adaptation of one from the Ball Blue Book of Preserving. I tend to take some leeway with freezer recipes because those are a tiny bit more forgiving. In truth, I cut the sugar down because it seemed excessive. I also halved the peaches instead of slicing since they were incredibly ripe.
Another thing to note is how many peaches you will want to thaw and eat. Don’t do huge containers unless you plan to eat all those peaches in about two days for they will turn brown and mushy.
I know this from experience.
So if you get a chance to have some home-grown peaches, keep this recipe in mind. I highly recommend a pile of them on top of these pancakes, if you need some inspiration.
1 quart peaches, peeled, pitted and halved
1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons Fruit-Fresh produce protector
Combine sugar and produce protector and set aside. Measure fruit and sprinkle with sugar mixture. Gently toss to coat peaches. Let stand until the sugar dissolves, about 10-15 minutes, tossing occasionally to help sugar dissolve.
Pack fruit loosely into freezer containers or freezer bags and freeze.
To serve: Place container in refrigerator to thaw. Length of time needed will depend on amount of fruit.
Note: Keep in mind that the peaches will only be good for about two days after thawing. The peaches will turn brown after that.
– Janine Pineo