If you follow me on Twitter, you know how excited I was when I found out Hen House would be offering Bader Peaches for $.68/lb this week. I’ve “went off” about these peaches before, but they are truly like candy with a pit. So even though I have never canned fruit before – the chance of having these peaches in February was worth giving it a shot.
But, before we get too far…let’s start with last week’s CSA.
As you can see from the artful picture (I’ve been messing with my new Nikon camera), I received about 8 lbs of peaches, Apple Butter, Good Natured Family Farms Milk and All-Beef Hot Dogs and a watermelon.
Originally, I wanted to can those peaches because they tasted so amazing. Which was good in theory, but not good in self-control. By the time we got around to canning, there were only seven left. Again, why I was so happy they were on sale this week.
So after a quick run to Hen House yesterday, I was the proud owner of another 10 lbs. of peaches.
Here are the necessities for canning peaches – peaches, sugar, canning jars and lids, and an ascorbic-acid (darkening reducer). You can either buy an ascorbic-acid (Fruit Fresh) or you can make your own with either lemon juice or crushed vitamin C and water.
I started taking amazing photos of my canning process, but canning is fast paced work and I kept forgetting to take pictures of each step. So, there isn’t going to be a step-by-step of my trials of canning fruit.
Don’t worry, I’m not going to leave you hanging. This canning peaches tutorial is TONS better than one I could put together. So if you are interested in canning your own peaches this week – print this off as a reference.
As a novice fruit-canner, there are a couple of steps I wished would have been better outlined. So here is my two-cents.
- Give yourself three hours to can peaches. It is five-step process and shouldn’t be started at 8:00 at night. Unfortunately, once you start, you have to finish.
- Pick firm peaches that have minimal amounts of bruising.
- Don’t be afraid to put peaches back into boiling water if the skins don’t come off easy. It is better to give them a little more time than to mutilate them while getting the skins off.
- Rule of thumb is 3 lbs. of peaches per quart jar. This can vary greatly, so it is better to have more canning jars sterilized than less.
- The best time to can peaches is before a meal. As you are cutting them into slices, you will have “pieces” that aren’t fit for canning, but are fit for eating. Since you don’t want to be wasteful, you’ll end up eating quite a few and may end up with a tummy ache. Not that I’m speaking from experience. 🙂
Look at it. It reminds me of my grandmother’s peaches. And while there aren’t twenty-five jars of peaches, there are enough to bring a little sunshine in my life on a cold and gray Kansas February day. And that will be when the work was TOTALLY worth it.
What about you? Have you ever canned peaches? Let me know in the comments.