Monday, July 25, 2011

Peach Honey,Y'All


***This is a repost from August of 2009***

The thing about writing a food blog and actually telling people that you write a blog about food is that you start having conversations similar to this "We should make tamales! It will take all day, maybe two days, but its totally worth it." Or "Have you ever made sushi? We should try making sushi." I'd like to say that I am the on the receiving end of these suggestions but I will admit, most of the time, the suggestions are coming out of my mouth. I need to remind myself that the blog is called "Thrifty DC Cook" and not "How I Lost My Life to My Addiction to Cooking." The problem is...I LOVE (need?) it. In addition to that, I have a lot of friends who are game. So far we have Southern Fried food day that will include fried chicken, fried okra, and fried green tomatoes. We also have a seafood day, a tamale day, and "breakfast for dinner" day. Stephanie and I have already done a Bun Bo Hue day and have several other Vietnamese dishes we would like to try out.
Justify Full

When my friend Jenny suggested that we try canning something, I was intrigued. The process included us heading out to a farm (or farmers market), getting produce, and canning it whole or creating something like tomato sauce. Jenny described to me all the things we could do: jams, jellies, pickled okra, relish, whole tomatoes, whole peaches, etc. I have to admit, Jenny got me mighty excited. We set a date. Our friend Anna was in. The mission was going to be...

Peach Honey, Y'All
Recipe adapted from Jenny's Mom
Makes about six 1/2 pint jars

(Note: We tripled this recipe, reduced the amount of sugar, and it was perfectly sweet.)

Ingredients
5 lbs of ripe peaches - $2.49 per lb (we bought free stone peaches from Eastern Market - its much easier to get the seed out when using free stone peaches)
6 1/2 cups of sugar - We spent $6 for 10 lbs of sugar.


Blanch the peaches in boiling water for 30 - 45 seconds, then put in ice water. Slide peels off, cut peaches into pieces, and discard stones. Puree in food processor to make 4 cups of peach pulp. Combine pulp with sugar in an enamel saucepan and stir over moderate heat until sugar is dissolved.

Bring to a boil, stirring frequently to prevent scorching. Reduce heat and simmer for about 30 minutes or until thick, stirring frequently.

Pour the "honey" into hot, sterilized jars (1/2-pint is a good size), filling to within 1/4 inch of top rim. Wipe rims clean with a clean, damp cloth and seal jars with the lids. (This is very important because the jars will not seal unless the rims are perfectly clean.)


Process the jars in a boiling-water bath for 10 minutes. Cool completely. Store in a cool, dark, dry place.

They came out so perfect. We were a little concerned when they were stewing because we were not sure what kind of consistency we were looking for in the honey. It seemed runnier than we wanted. After a quick call to Jenny's mom, she reassured us that we got it right and that it would thicken after it cooled a bit. How did it taste? Like ripe peach flavored honey. It was so good. We ate it on bread with some butter. Delish. Since then, I have put it in my tea and made sweet peach tea. At Jazmin's party, we poured it over some brie and served it with some crackers. I've made peanut butter and peach honey sandwiches. They are great for breakfast.

The process took about 6-7 hours (not including time shopping for materials.) We ended up spending about $25 on peaches, $6 on sugar, and made 18 jars. You could spend a lot less on peaches since most grocery stores have been selling peaches for about $1 per lb. The day ended up being a lot of fun because we just sat on my couch (in between processes), watched the Next Food Network Star marathon and talked and ate food. We also squealed every time we heard "PING" as the jars were sealing. It was great.


Big thank you to Jenny who shared this recipe with us. She actually hand wrote the recipe for Anna and I. (She is so sweet.) She got me so excited about canning that she had me driving out to Woodbridge with her so that we could pick up two large canning pots for $15! Yay Craigslist!

I'm waiting for they day when someone says to me that we should ship some sand from Hawaii (because no one in their right mind would trust any sand in DC) to build a sand box and dig a hole, fill it with palm leaves, smoke a pig and have a big Hawaiian Luau. My response would be "Where can we get a deal on a whole pig?" and "I need to find myself a hula skirt."


4 comments:

  1. I'm totally in for the pig roast--we can cover the pig with peach honey!

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  2. what about the cost of the jars? and what are you going to do with 18 jars of peach honey? what about the cost of storage? I'm not sure this is thrifty....

    ReplyDelete
  3. Good Point. I actually have been thinking that the cost of the jars should be included in this equation. Luckily, Jenny had all the canning supplies already so nothing had to be purchased. Anna and I plan to reimburse Jenny with some cash or some Bourbon. Amazon.com has 12 jars for $8 so you can add $1.50 to the cost of each jar if you are pricing it out. And remember that these jars are reusable so you would only need to buy the seal to do another canning project.

    As for the 18 jars, they were divided up by Jenny, Anna, and I. I can tell you now that I only have two jars left. After sharing them with some friends, saving one for my parents, I only really have one jar left to enjoy. I'm going to save it for the dead of winter when I need a taste of summer.

    There are no storage costs.

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