Wednesday, September 10, 2008

New Lesson

Peach-Rosemary Jam
My first batch ever of preserves, Peach-Rosemary Jam from Martha Stewart.

I have a dear friend, Mary, who is amazing! She knows about everything and not just a little but a lot about everything! Of course, she knows a lot about canning and preserving food. Last year I was very interested in learning how to can peaches but never got around to inviting her over for a lesson. This year I got my act together and was able to give it a shot; I'm so glad I did! The main motivator was the delicious recipe above. Who could pass up making that interesting combo especially when you have a box full of juicy and very ripe Palisade peaches sitting on your kitchen counter.

I was also motivated by different bloggers who had written about freezer jam. I never knew there was such a procedure and so I tried that first. I made strawberry and peach jam. Wow! It's so easy and fast! It's quite delicious too! Definitely a fool-proof way to preserve for a beginner.

With an abundant amount of ripe peaches and all the materials necessary on hand, I was ready to move on to something a little different. Today I made this peach salsa recipe (recommended by Mary).
Cooking Peach Salsa

Again, I found this recipe and the procedure for canning to be quite simple. I was able to get this batch made in under 2 hours.
Peach Salsa Cooling

I'm very happy with my new knowledge of how to preserve the harvest. Next year I hope to own my own instruments and pots and try out a few new recipes. BTW, Mary used a steamer instead of a traditional canning pot. It saves water and energy (because you don't have to heat as much water) and can even be used as a roaster! I'm glad it's what I used for my first attempt at this because it's really quite easy and now I won't be intimidated to try this method.

Ooh, I found these beautiful canning jars and they would be perfect for making pretty gifts out of my preserves! I would love to use them next year too. Next year better be good, ya think!? There's lots to get ready for.

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