Keep the flavor of summer with this delicious peach jam. Every summer I prepare several jams when fruit is mature, rich in flavor and nutrients. When I am on vacation in Tuscany I take advantage of the fresh fruit and vegetables from a local farmer’s garden. The taste is deliciously irresistible. A few days ago I picked many peaches, and I instantly knew I had to make a jam to enjoy for breakfast on a piece of toast or as dessert on an Italian crostata.
Once you taste homemade jam you will never want to buy it again – it so tasty, rich in flavor – and healthy. My recipe calls only for fresh peaches and sugar, no pectin is added.
Peaches are a typical summer fruit in Italy, juicy and rich in water, and therefore perfect for summertime lifestyle! Peaches are highly satiating and have a low GI (Glycemic Index), keeping hunger at bay for longer periods, so they are a good choice to incorporate into a weight loss diet. They’re packed with antioxidants— beneficial compounds that combat oxidative damage and help protect your body against aging and disease. The fresher and riper the fruit, the more antioxidants it contains.
CONFETTURA DI PESCHE (PEACH JAM)
1.4 kg (about 3 lbs) ripe peaches
450 g (2 ¼ cups) granulated sugar
1/2 organic lemon, juice
1. Peel, pit and cut peaches in small pieces
2. In a large saucepan cook peaches on medium heat for 5-7 minutes
3. Add the lemon juice and sugar. Stir well to combine all ingredients
4. Cook on medium-low heat for an additional 30- 35 minutes until thickness is similar to honey, stirring frequently and skiming off the foam. When jam becomes quite dense, stir constantly to prevent sticking to the bottom of the saucepan. This recipe prepares approx. 1200 g (less than 3 pounds) jam (3 jars). Good jam should cook until the temperature reaches 220-222°F/104-105°C on a candy thermometer. If you don’t have a candy thermometer, use this test: Place a small amount of jam on a spoon and pour back sideways into the pan. At first it will be liquid, then later two separate drops will form on the spoon. The jam is ready to be removed from the heat when it falls off the spoon as a single drop.If you prefer a smooth jam, you can blend it for a few seconds at low speed
5. Remove from the heat and store the jam in jars in the refrigerator for two weeks. However if you prefer to keep it longer, you should preserve it, using for example the following canning method
6. For canning, use previously sterilized jars and new caps. Pour warm jam in hot jars and fill them up leaving a gap of 1 cm (½ in). Seal and turn them upside down for about 10 minutes to create the vacuum. Put the jars upright in a large pan, cover with cold water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and let it simmer for about 30 minutes, then turn off heat. Remove the jars from the pan when the water is cold and store in a cool and dark place. – Paola