3 March 2008


Yep, I'm really inventive on the titles today!

At the markets on Sunday, peaches were $2 a kg, so I figured this was my last chance to get some preserves before the season was over. DD loves tinned peaches, and while at that price it probably is only a little cheaper to buy them this way, at least I know what she's getting. I bought $10 worth, or about 5kg. That is a LOT of peaches.

Before starting actually cutting up the fruit, I wash all my jars and lids (even if they were already clean, it's best to give them a wash in soapy water, then a rinse in clean). It's always a bit of a guess as to how many bottles of what sizes. This time I just washed ten jars, which was all I had lids for!

Here are the bottles. For once, I remembered to soak the rubber seals, and put them on the jars before I started putting fruit in! Preparation is good, and makes for a much smoother preserving session.

Then I added the sugar syrup to the jars. You don't fill them up, or there won't be any room for the peaches. In fact, I find this much is plenty of syrup, I rarely have to add more after packing the jars.

Then it is time to start cutting the fruit. This is the tedious bit. Thankfully though, these were freestone peaches, so easy to separate from the seed, and because of this made much cleaner slices. They actually look quite artistic, don't they? They were as delicious as the look too. I'm not a huge peach fan, but I couldn't stop eating these. They were the nicest peaches I'd tasted in a long time, sweet and juicy.

Then you do all that boiling and watching, and of course, getting the very hot jars back out of the boiling water (I really do have to buy some bottle tongs!). And then you end up with this...

Eight jars of peaches. The smaller jars in the front are 600ml, the larger ones at the back are 1 litre. That should last DD a little while at least. Maybe a month or two...

Then I made up some labels on the computer, so that I know how long they've been in the cupboard. I just stuck them on with clag glue, hopefully they will come off easily that way.

Then they went into the preserve cupboard with the others. It's lucky I've run out of jar lids, as I'm fast running out of room!


MyThreeDaughters said...

You have done a great job. There is a little packing stick I think that is used for putting the fruit in. I think we added the syrup last and used the harder peaches, but just can't remember the name of them. They taste like the canned ones. We have a different unit, loved seeing yours.

MyThreeDaughters said...

Often when you put the syrup in last, just before putting the lids on the group of bottles you top them up to the top, as it takes awhile for the liquid to get into all the air bubbles. You may be able to get an old Fowlers book on ebay. Have you ever seen the show entries where they packed the fruit in rows etc.? I wonder if they still do that now?

Rinelle said...

Yes, my grandmotehr used to pack the fruit and vegies very carefully to make a display at the show. My mum still talks about it, although she also says that they never ate the vegies, they were just for show.

I have bought the recent fowlers book finally (apparently the older ones are no longer considered safe to use), and it basically says that the floating is actually a sign of a good seal. A packing stick might help, but since I'm more concerned about the taste than the look, I don't think I'll bother right now.