Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Mid-Week Wonder -- Peachy Pear Jam

Do you know why our grandmothers engaged in the time-tested activity of canning?  

They didn't have freezers.

They had ice-boxes and ice-delivery-men (hope they were cute and well-built, because they made frequent visits hefting big cubes of ice into the kitchen). Very vintage. Not too convenient, however.

I have all the stuff to can: jars, a big pan to "water-bathe" my jars, canning recipe books. It's busy employed in taking up space on a shelf in the garage.

In my dreamy moments I envision myself canning with my friends and children.  We'd be pleasantly flushed about the cheeks as boiling water steamed from the stove, we'd happily peal bushels of peaches and stand back at our  gleaming jeweled jars of jam with pride and satisfaction.

Ha! That ain't gonna happen any time soon.

But I don't want my over-ripening peaches to go to waste! Which got me to thinking,  if my grandma lived my daily life, she just might employ the marvelous freezer. What with all our time-saving devices, our "free" time is full of other things -- some meaningful, some not so, just like all our extra cash. But that's business for another day.

Today is about making beautiful luscious Peachy-Pear Jam in under an hour.

What you need:

4 large peaches and 1 or 2 pears
(very ripe is fine :)
1 packet Ball Brand Fruit Jell Freezer Jam Pectin
1 1/2 Cups sugar

Three bowls
One for the peels, one for the fruit, one for the pectin and sugar

Something to chop/crush your fruit.  I have a tool, but a clean can will do.

4 9.5oz (280 ml) snack size freezer containers.

You can enlist a helper, if you like.  Mine played with a very messy-watery-hot-wheels track on the kitchen floor most of the time -- when we were all done, we swished a beach towel on the floor and called it mopping!

Mix the sugar and pectin in one bowl.  Use your fingers or back of a spoon to break any pectin clumps that may have formed.

Peel the fruit -- if it's very ripe, this is a cinch, messy, but easy.

Aren't they beautiful bits of sunshine?

Chop up the fruit -- this is where a helper can have some fun.

Mix the fruit and sugar/pectin mixture.

Ladle into clean freezer jars and snap on the lids.

Stand back in wonder --
Check the time, because I'm sure, like me, you have somewhere to be in a few minutes.

Label and date the lids, pop into the freezer and enjoy when you want to.

Make sure you serve your preserves in a pretty vintage bowl and serve with a silver spoon while you enjoy the fruit of your half hour labor.

A midweek wonder that we can freeze up a little bit of summer sunshine to enjoy on waffles or toast on a snowy winter morning.

Grandma would approve!

1 comment:

  1. You totally make this look do-able, and I've never canned in my life! :)