Pigtown Design: Peach and Bourbon Preserves

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My neighbour, an older Greek man who is the most amazing gardener, brought me over some peaches from one of his trees. While they weren’t the biggest or the most beautiful peaches, I know that they were grown with love, and without lots of chemicals.Since I had just gotten some Maryland peaches the day earlier, I pondered what I could do with them. I remembered last year when Mr. Stephanos had given me some figs, I made fig & bourbon jam from them, so I thought Peach and Bourbon are a great combination, so why not try it.

I hunted around for a recipe, and found a simple one – basically meaning one that meant I didn’t have to leave the house to get any of the ingredients. The recipe came from the Chicago Tribune and it was so easy.peach & bourbon preserves (4)

I wasn’t sure how much my peaches weighed, so I just estimated. I also didn’t have any tapioca, so I used some pectin to help it gel.

To make skinning the peaches easier, I did the boiling water/ice bath technique.
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Put the fruit/veg in boiling water for about 30 seconds, but not long enough to start it cooking, and then plunge into a bowl of ice-water. The skins will peel right off. This is great for tomatoes, too!

I cut up the peaches, but perhaps not as small as suggested and then added everything to the pot. I added one of the peach pits because, if I remember correctly, they impart some pectin.

After about five minutes, everything began to boil and soften. Oh, where it says to add a half-teaspoon of bourbon? Ha! It was more like a half a cup. I also used sugar that had a vanilla bean in it.peach & bourbon preserves (5)

After cooking for another ten minutes, it was really starting to break down, but to hurry it along, I gave it a couple of wizzes with my immersion blender.

Then I decanted the jam into some of my Weck jars. It was pretty true to the recipe and made about two cups. I got four of the small jars with a 5.4 oz. capacity and one with a 12 oz. capacity.

The peaches might be a little chunkier than I like, but that’s okay. I checked the jam/preserves this morning and the jam had set nicely.The bit I tasted last night was good, but I think that after sitting a little while, it will be even better!

For the recipe, click on the image to enlarge it, or click on this Chicago Tribune link.

Meg Fielding

Meg Fielding writes the local interior design and lifestyle blog Pigtown Design. She enjoys dual citizenship with the US and the UK.


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