Recent Posts

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Spiced Peach Butter {or plain}

Have you ever heard of fruit butters?  Apple butter is pretty famous in my husband's family. My father-in-law makes it about every year and we love enjoying it.  It's a thick sauce of cooked apples and sugar with some spices.  It's great for toast, peanut butter sandwiches, ice cream topping, etc.  

My sweet friend had a peach tree that needed picking and she let me get a whole big box. I had spied a recipe for peach butter in my Ball Blue Book - Guide to Preserving -  and wanted to give it a try if you've never canned food for preserving before, be sure to get a book or read about it from a reputable source such as the National Center for Home Food Preservation).   I'm not sure why it's called peach butter or apple butter, but my guess is that it's about the consistency of spreading butter on bread, which it's perfect for.  It's basically applesauce or peach sauce slowly cooked with sugar and spices until it caramelizes and turns a deep brown color. Mmmmm!  My daughter, husband and I have been enjoying our peach butter on toast, bread and butter, and peanut butter sandwiches. But right now I'm dreaming of a peach crisp with vanilla ice cream drizzled in peach butter.  There are lots of ways to use this yummy stuff.  It'd be a great cheesecake sauce - super yummy for the fall time!  Oh man I can't wait for fall, it's my favorite!

A few weeks ago I had a lovely smell filling my house.  I was simmering a pot of this peach butter. I simmered it for 4-5 hours til it was nice and thick. The smell was making me crazy for fall. The temperature here was a bit cooler too, and so I had this big craving for fall.   Fall is my favorite time of year, I was so giddy!  I think my husband thought I was a little nuts, I just wanted to cook and bake everything fall like - rolls, bread, pie, cinnamon rolls, soup.  The temperatures have since gone back up and so it's not feeling so fall-ish in the air, but I'm really anticipating that again in the coming months.  

Peaches were ready here in Albuquerque about a month ago - I know in other parts of the country peach season is just about ready to begin. So hopefully you can make some of this tasty peach butter.  Our apple tree is just about ready to be picked, and I'm excited to make some apple butter. I'll have to share my father-in-law's famous recipe when we get that made up.  

Happy canning!  (also if you need canning equipment - you can find it here)

Spiced Peach Butter {or plain}

Yield: about 4 pints
Recipe from the Ball Blue Book - Guide to Preserving - Published in 2009


4 to 4 ½ pounds peaches (about 36 medium size peaches)
½ cup water
4 cups sugar

Spiced variation:
1-2 teaspoons cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg (any combination of these spices)
*If you want plain peach butter do not add the spices.


****Note (please read before beginning): This recipe is for canning spiced peach butter with the boiling water method.  If you are not familiar with proper food preservation methods please read about it here and follow all instructions:  or purchase the Ball Blue Book here: Ball Blue Book
It is very important to follow proper canning instructions to ensure the safety of the food.  The high heat of this process kills yeasts, molds, and other bacteria.  Failure to follow the exact method could result in spoiled food and major sickness including food poisoning such as botulism.  

To prepare the pulp:

Wash and blanch the peaches. Blanching is putting them in boiling water for 30 seconds to one minute and then into a clean sink full of cold water. This makes them very easy to peel.  Peel, pit and slice the peaches.  In a large saucepan or stockpot - place peaches and ½ cup of water. Simmer the peaches over medium-high heat until they are soft.  Puree the simmered peaches with food processor, blender or immersion blender.  Measure 2 quarts of peach pulp.  

To make the peach butter:

Combine the peach pulp, sugar and spices (omit spices if you want plain peach butter) in a large saucepan or stockpot.  Cook over medium heat - reducing heat as it comes to a boil, until it reaches a nice soft simmer, stir occasionally, being careful to not have the heat to high that it burns.  Cook until the mixture is thick enough to round up on a spoon (about the consistency of jam - or slightly thinner if you prefer).  It took about 3-4 hours for mine to reach this consistency.  And I stirred it every 5 to 10 minutes making sure it didn’t get stuck to the bottom.  Cooking it on a low-slow simmer helps it to caramelize nicely.

Ladle the hot butter into clean and hot jars, leaving ¼ inch headspace.  Remove any air bubbles with spatula.  Wipe any spills from the jar, especially where the lid will touch and seal.  Adjust the two-piece caps on the jars - until tight. Do not tighten as tight as you can. Just enough to know it’s closed.  Process in a boiling-water canner for 10 minutes (adding time for altitude adjustment). See chart below.  I had to add 10 minutes to the processing time for my altitude - for a total time of 20 minutes.  

Following canning guide for removing jars and letting them cool.  (link at the top of the recipe or in the Ball Blue Book).  

Boiling-Water Canner Altitute Adjustments (from the Ball Blue Book - guide to preserving - 2009)
Altitude in feet
Increase processing time
1,001 to 3,000
5 minutes
3,001 to 6,000
10 minutes
6,001 to 8,000
15 minutes
8,001 to 10,000
20 minutes

No comments:

Post a Comment