Making and Preserving Peach Butter
Breakfast for farming families needs to be hearty. As a member of a farming family we depend on the nutrients of breakfast to see us to the next meal which is very often 6+ hours away. After breakfast there is housework that needs to be done which include dishes, laundry, sweeping floors, and a quick tidy up before heading outdoors. Once we are outdoors, there are many chores such as gardening, tending to the farm animals, and field work. Field work depends on the time of the year it is. Sometimes field work is chopping and splitting firewood, sometimes it is canning and preserving the garden harvest, sometimes it is gathering honey and storing it for later use, or digging out the pond when it has dried up so that we can make it deeper to hold more of the spring water, or fixing fences, or cutting grass in the yard and pasture, or fixing something that needs mending such as the house or vehicles….
Often for breakfast we will also serve biscuits or toast. A great accompaniment to this type of bread is peach butter. Peach butter is made of two simple ingredients: peaches and sugar. For every 2 quarts of smashed peaches I will need about 4 cups of sugar.
First, I wash the peaches, remove the skin with a potato peeler, slice up the peaches, and discard the pit.
Next, I put the peaches in a large pot. If the peaches are juicy I only add the sugar and if the peaches are not juicy I add just a bit of water just to keep the bottom peaches of the pot from scorching.
I make my peach butter outdoors. Going from left to right, the first pot contains lids for canning, the second pot is cooking the peach butter, and the third pot is where I have the canning jars and where I will be doing the boiling water bath method of canning.
I cook the peach butter until the peaches are soft. Check and stir peaches regularly to prevent sticking and scorching.
When peaches are done cooking, I use a hand mixer to pulverize the peaches to a consistency resembling apple sauce.
I pour the hot peach butter into hot sterilized canning jars, leaving 1/4 inch headspace. I then wipe the jar rims.
I add the lids and tighten to only hand tight. Do not over tighten.
I add the filled jars to boiling water and boil for about 5 minutes.
The peach butter looks great!