Thursday, September 25, 2008
How to Can Peaches (and tomatoes too!)
So as you all know, last week, I took the time out to can peaches and tomatoes. I ended up doing 4 quarts of peaches, 3 containers of peaches for freezer, 1 bag of tomatoes for freezer, 4 pints of peach jam, and 7 quarts of tomatoes. And I had to throw away 26 peaches because they had gone bad before I could get to them! I also made 2 freezer containers full of pico de gallo that we ended up sharing and eating. WOW! This week, they were offering pears and I was super tempted but decided I need a break, so if they offer them again, I will go for it, but not this time.
Anyway, I started doing the tutorial for the peaches and tomatoes but didnt take pictures of all of the steps for each one. I had a request (Thanks Alea!!) to do the tutorial, so here we go! (For more information on canning or if i dont make sense or miss something, pickyourown.org is a great link!)
First, gather your supplies. Jars with brand new lids and bands, a big 20 quart pot with lid, a lot of sugar, lots of ice, and can-jel (Clear-jel) for pectin, and Fruit Fresh (or lemon juice) And a jar grabber! (I had to use a giant wrench because I could not find the other canning supplies anywhere!!) Fruit Fresh and pectin was at walmart. Ooh and dont forget a wide mouth funnel.
1. Sterilize your jars and lids. I did the jars in the dishwasher on high heat and did the lids and bands in boiling water.
2. wash your fruit (or tomatoes)
Then you are going to peel them. Drop them into a pot of boiling water for about 30 seconds and then shock them in some icey water for about a minute.
Peel and Slice them.....SUPER easy!
Do this for tomatoes too:
While you are peeling peaches, start your syrup. I did 6 cups boiling water and added 3 cups of sugar. I stirred until dissolved and boiled it and then simmered.
Once the peaches are all cut , coat them with the Fruit Fresh or lemon juice and then add them to the syrup....note: use a bigger pot than I did!! This is called hot packing the peaches. It helps make the fruit safer longer, helps with coloring, etc. You can skip this step, but for my first time, I wanted to make sure everything I did was "right". Do this in the barely boiling syrup for about 5 minutes. Mmmmmm.....
Now pour them into your jars with your funnel. Try to keep the opening as clean as possible.
Dont do this.
Fill them until about a 1/2 from the top. Take a knife and run it all around the inside to get all of the air out. I dont think I did this well because I had floating peaches.
Seal them up (make sure everything is clean so it seals well) and then boil them in a covered pot for 20 minutes.
Take them out with your giant wrench or jar grabber after the 20 minutes are up and let them sit over night on your counter or somewhere that they aren't moved around. Once the jars are cooled, check to make sure they sealed. If the safety top pops up and down, you can either reboil the, (if its still hot) or put them in the fridge and eat them soon. If it doesn't pop, you are done!!
With the tomatoes, I obviously didn't use the hot pack method and the syrup. Instead, I filled the jars with the tomatoes and lemon juice, then added water and canned them in the hot water.
The peach jam, I used the instructions that came in the box of pectin and it turned out so good! YUM! (I'll add a picture later of the jam)
Let me know if you have any questions or if I totally screwed up here! :) Enjoy! Google it all too! There is so much info on canning and different recipes for peach pie filling, peach chutney, spaghetti sauce, salsas, etc.
I still want to can apples (apple sauce!) and pears! Pin It