Being appointed a 2016 "Canbassador" for sweetpreservation.com in conjunction with Washington State Fruit Commission. My first endeavor was having a fun and creative time with their Northwest Cherries (my Cherry recipes click here).
This month I was sent some beautiful peaches (my SlowCooker Peach Honey Fruit Butter - click here) and nectarines to 'play with' and can. The fruit is superb and was perfectly ripe. It was such a treat to turn everything into tasty pantry items.. I cannot wait to gift out some of these beautiful preserved nectarines at Christmas time!! Don't worry, I made some to enjoy for myself too. I feel so honored and excited to be able to share my creations with you all. Once again, thank you to The Washington State Fruit Commission! ~Enjoy! Diane
Nectarine Slices in Spiced Rum Syrup
Makes approx. 1 quart or 2 pints
6 large nectarines, sliced and pitted
2 cups water
3/4 cup honey or sugar, plus 2 tablespoons more
1/2 cup spiced rum, plus 2 tablespoons more
2 cinnamon sticks
3 star anise
1 vanilla bean, split in half (or 1 tsp vanilla bean paste)
1 quart or 2 pint glass jars with lids
1. Place sliced nectarines, water, 3/4 cup honey and 1/2 cup rum in a pot with the cinnamon, star anise and the vanilla bean or paste. (The nectarines should be covered by the liquid.) Turn the heat to medium-high and stir so that the honey dissolves completely. Allow to simmer gently for about 1 hour (stir every now to prevent scorching)
2. With a slotted spoon, remove the nectarines and place in a bowl. If preferred, remove the skins at this time. I leave mine on.
3. Bring the pot of syrup to a gentle boil on the stove, adding in the additional 2 tablespoons each of the honey and rum, and allow to cook for 10-15 minutes, so the syrup is reduced and thickened. Remove from the heat. With a slotted spoon, remove the star anise and cinnamon from syrup and vanilla bean if used,
4. Spoon 1/3 cup of hot syrup into bottom of hot, sterile canning jar, pack the nectarines into jar(s). Pour additional syrup over the fruit and If some of the nectarines are not fully immersed in the liquid, you can add more rum or syrup so that they are all covered and brought to 1/2" head-space. De-bubble jars and recheck head-space.
5. Add new lid and band, process in a Boiling Water Bath Canner for: Hot Pack ~ 25 minutes Quarts/20 minutes Pints (or according to your local regulations/altitude.)
6. Once sealed and cooled, wash and label jars - store in a cool, dark place for at least 6 weeks for optimum flavor absorption.
Canning Information & Link: nchfp.uga.edu/how/can_02/nectarine_sliced.html
Photos by: Diane Baker for Canning and Cooking at Home
Recipe Adapted from: How to Be A Domestic Goddess by Nigella Lawson
Nectarines Provided by: Washington Fruit Commission
K This recipe is similar to my other peach fruit butter recipes but, this is finished off in a slowcooker - this makes a rather large batch - if you want to start smaller - try my Homemade Peach Butter (small batch) or my Peach Butter with a kiss of vanilla.
All are easy to make and taste great! ~Enjoy! Diane
SlowCooker Peach Butter
8 Cups Chopped Peaches (approx 15 Med)
1/2 cup water
2 1/2 Cups sugar
2 1/2 Cups honey
1 small lemon, zested with juice added in
(Approx 1 Tbs zest and 2 Tbs juice)
1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste
Wash peaches in cold water to remove dirt and fuzz.
Cut an 'X ' mark on the stem end of each peach.
Blanch peaches in boiling water for about one minute.
Plunge peaches in ice water and let set for two minutes.
Peel away skins, slice and remove the pit.
**If your peaches are fully ripe - the skins will be easy to peel off using a paring knife - I sometimes luck out and can do this without blanching. To me, peaches are ripe when you can press the flesh with your thumb and leave a slight indentation into the peach. Once peeled, slice and pit your peaches.
Combine all in a stainless pot on stove top, cook down until peaches
Are soft, blend with immersion blender, pour carefully into a Slowcooker
To cook-down all day (or overnight) on LOW until it reaches the consistency
You like, (Keep in mind, this can take some time - I like my butter to be firm enough
to round up on a spoon and not runny) The last batch I made cooked down approx 12-14 hours.
Prior to jarring, I do the "plate test" by placing a small dish in the freezer for at least 10 mins. I place a spoonful of peach mixture onto plate and tip plate - mixture should not run at all. As well, the mixture should mound/round up easy onto a regular spoon and not run off back into slow-cooker.
Wash jars in warm soapy water, rinse and place in canning pot/water to warm up jars for canning. Place lids and bands in warm (not boiling) water.
Setup your area to process the butter.
Ladle hot butter into hot jars, leaving ¼ inch head space.
Remove any air bubbles.
Wipe rim of jar to remove any food particles.
Adjust two piece caps on jar and tighten finger tight.
Process in a water bath canning pot for 10 minutes (or according to regs in your area)
Remove and place on cloth towel in a draft free area.
Do not move jars for 24 hours to allow for proper seal.
Any jars that haven't sealed properly place in fridge for immediate use.
Date and Label your jars, Peach Butter will keep up to one year in storage.
Yield: Approx 5 pints
Recipe & Photos by: Diane Baker
Peaches From: Washington Fruit Commission
Stewed Tomatoes (Pressure Canned)
makes approx 7 pints
4 Quarts Chopped Roma Tomatoes (16 cups)
1/2 Cup Chopped Onion
1/2 Cup Chopped Green Pepper
4 tsp celery salt
4 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp citric acid, per pint - add directly to each jar
7 pint jars
Remove skins off all the tomatoes (they will curl during cooking and resemble little toothpick shards if you don't - trust me on this one!) Combine all ingredients in a large stainless steel pot on stove-top. Bring to a medium boil, cover and cook 10 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking. Fill hot tomatoes into hot jars, leaving 1⁄2-inch head-space. Remove air bubbles and adjust head-space if needed. Wipe jar rims.
Process in a Dial Gauge Pressure Canner at 11 pounds pressure OR in a Weighted Gauge Pressure Canner at 10 pounds pressure: Pints 15 minutes **adjust psi to your local altitude.
Photos by: Diane Baker for Canning and Cooking at Home
Recipe by: NCHFP "So Easy to Preserve"
You can make this ice cream with your stand mixer. No churning, no cooking, just using the whisk attachment on your stand mixer. Whisk these ingredients into an ice cream that has the feel of a smooth gelato without the fruit, almost like an ultra creamy custard ice cream. This is so indulgent and rich! This is truly a 'treat'! You can also use the base of this recipe and add in any of your own flavorings and toppings (I think caramel and nuts would push this ice cream OVER the edge!) ~Enjoy! Diane
Bailey's Irish "No Churn" Ice Cream
**you can find Bailey's Non-Alcoholic Coffee Creamers in the refrigerated section of most grocery stores.
Recipe & Photos by: Diane Baker for Canning and Cooking at Home
I was searching for a recipe that I could use my abundance of zucchini in...something pickled. Summer pickles that could be made easily, and not be canned traditionally. (gasp! yes, I do make refrigerator pickles! I like the instant gratification of them - and being able to use any vinegar's I want - leaves me open to discovering new flavor profiles!) This recipe is originally written by Use Real Butter and uses daikon and carrots. I decided to switch it up a bit and make mine using carrots, pickling cucumber and zucchini. On just the second day when I tasted these - I had to refrain from eating the entire jar! they are wonderful! I love the mellow flavor of Rice Vinegar! Give these a try - they are great as a snack or on a sandwich - even as a side to your lunch or dinner fare. Enjoy! ~ Diane
Jar Ingredients: (brine below)
wash and cut all vegetables into 'matchsticks" a bit thicker
then julienne cut. I went ahead and cut all mine by hand.
I used 2 large carrots, 1 small pickling cucumber and one large zucchini
Place all vegetables into a one quart canning jar or large container.
Prepare brine (below) and pour over vegetables in jar. Let cool, cover and keep refrigerated.
These should last about 3 weeks in your refrigerator.
Brine for One Quart:
2 tsps kosher or sea salt
1 cup unseasoned rice vinegar
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
Combine the vinegar, salt, sugar, and water together until the
sugar dissolves. Pour over prepared vegetables.
**Want a SPICY kick? Add in some Red Pepper Flake!