Canning Pears

So, canning pears, is exactly the sames as peaches – without the blanching process. I found it to much easier to can the pears. It took us about two hours. I don’t know if that was just because we knew what we were doing this time around. You can find specific instructions here: http://www.pickyourown.org/pdfs/pearscanning.pdf. Here a few photos:

All the pears! A co-worker of mine had a friend that I guess orders pears by the truckload once a year. I was able to get the pears for .66 cents a lb.

These were are the pears all skinned and quartered. Looks a little disgusting if you ask me.

The almost finished product-still needed to be boiled. These I put in the jars myself. The pears alone were super sweet and juicy. They just melted in your mouth! Can't wait to enjoy these after sitting in some nice syrup.

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What would life be like

I’m feeling a litte down. I turned on SOS Radio (sosradio.net – stream it live) to help cheer me up. This song came on and this was what I needed to here. Although this song, that reminds me of friendship that I lost – it was the last thing I wrote to her in my final letter to her. What if you could see yourself thru another pair of eyes, What if you could hear the truth, Instead of old familiar lies, What if you could feel inside, the power of the hand that made the universe You’d realize… She probably had no idea why I choose to write these lyrics to her. The truth was I wish she could have seen How God see her.. as very lovable and worth loving. That is what I needed to hear today.

What would life be like by Big Daddy Weave (music: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nuhk6AUlsBQ)
I wish I was more of a man
Have you ever felt that way
And if I had to tell you the truth
I’m afraid I’d have to say
That after all I’ve done and failed to do
I feel like less than I was meant to be
 
What if I could fix myself
Maybe then I could get free
I could try to be somebody else
Who’s much better off than me
But I need to remember this
That it’s when I’m at my weakest
I can clearly see
 
He made the lame walk and the dumb talk
And He opened blinded eyes to see
That the sun rises on His time
Yet He knows our deepest desperate need
And the world waits while His heart aches
To realize the dream
I wonder what life would be like if we let Jesus live thru you and me
 
What if you could see yourself thru another pair of eyes
What if you could hear the truth
Instead of old familiar lies
What if you could feel inside
The power of the hand that made the universe You’d realize
 
That He made the lame walk and the dumb talk
And He opened blinded eyes to see
That the sun rises on His time
Yet He knows our deepest desperate need
And the world waits while His heart aches
 
To realize the dream
I wonder what life would be like if we let Jesus live thru you and me
 
Yeah, yeah
 
All our hearts they burn within us
All our lives we’ve longed for more
So let us lay our lives before the one who gave His life for us
 
He made the lame walk and the dumb talk
He opened blinded eyes to see
That the sun rises on His time
Yet He knows our deepest desperate need
And the world waits while His heart aches
To realize the dream
I wonder what life would be like if we let Jesus live thru you and me
 
Yeah, yeah
Let Him live through you and me
Yeah, yeah

Canning Peaches Unwrapped

This weekend we took on canning peaches. When our peaches became ripe, I didn’t think that I would can any peaches. I had looked it up and it seemed to be like a lot of work, but after seeing the number of peaches we had and after listening to a co-worker explain to me how to can peaches, it sounded pretty easy and that it would be worth my time in the long run. It is hard for me to pass up FREE and we do buy canned peaches on a fairly regular basis. When my co-worker offer to give me free mason jars, I was sold. She also offered me her pot to help the peaches. I found and use this website to guide us through canning peaches process: http://www.pickyourown.org/peachescanning.htm. We decided to the hot pack the peaches as the website listed a few good reason to hot pack them rather than raw packing them. Although, through the whole process, we did wonder if this extra work was neccessary. In the end, it really was a lot of work. It wasn’t hard, but just took a while to get through them all. I’m quite sure we had over a hundred peaches that we canned and in the end we ended up with 12 jars of canned peaches. So, if we were to ration it, that means one jar of peaches for us each month – which is pretty good.

Step 1: Washing the Peaches. We threw all of our peaches in cold water in our sink and let them soak.

Step 2: Put peaches in boiling water. We found leaving them in the water for 1.5 minutes worked best for us.

Step 3: Put peaches in cold water bath. The process of putting the peaches in hot water then cold water loosens the skins and you can pull the skins right off of the peach.

Step 4: Pull off skins and cut peaches. We opted to quarter the peaches. We also sprinkled the peaches with some fresh fruit preservative to stop the peaches from browning.

Step 5: Let the cut peaches soak in the sugar/water mixture. We used the medium syrup which is 2 cups of water to 1 cup of sugar. Jeff worked on making the syrup while I started peeling and cutting the peaches.

Step 6: Put the peaches into the mason jars and fill with syrup.

Last Steps: After the peaches were put into jars, we put the lids on. The canning pot could fit seven jars, so once we had seven jars ready to go, we completely submerged them in boiling water for 30 minutes. Then we place them on cooling racks in our pantry. Once they cooled, you could hear the lids pop indicating that they were sealed.

Yummy Yummy Canned Peaches

Super Sweet Peach Freezer Jam Unwrapped

After harvesting peaches, I brought them into work and begged my co-workers to take them all home! While discussing what we could do with peaches, they mentioned making jam. Then, I remembered, my friend had told me about making a super duper easy peach freezer jam (thanks Erin P!). I called my husband and made sure we had some good peaches on the tree and went to walmart to get the stuff. I just needed some jam jars, instant pectin, lemon juice and sugar! The directions on the back on the instant pectin only called for 1 1/2 cups of sugar, but I had an internet recipe where it was less fruit and 5 cups of sugar – so I split the difference and did 4 cups for my first batch and then decided to do 3 cups for the second batch – both are super sweet! It didn’t take as much time as I thought it would and was really easy. I suppose the worse part was the clean up. It was a little hard trying to cut up the peaches – with them being skinned, they were pretty slippery. It probably cost less than $10 dollars for everything and in the end, I got 12 eight ounce containers of jam – so less than a dollar per container. In addition to adding more sugar, I also decided to low pulse my peaches in the blender instead of mashing them. I think I probably low pulsed them a little too much, but it was so much faster than trying to mash them. I would use the blender again, but just go slower with the blending. With adding more sugar – I’ll have to wait and see how it tastes tomorrow! Recipe is at the bottom of pictures, but you can also find it on the back on your pectin package. 

The start of peach freezer jam

Peaches skinned and cut - ready for smashing (or blending in my case)

Blended Peaches, Sugar, Lemon Juice all mixed together

Mixture all ladled into jars.. yummy!

Just being creative with camera angle!

Ready for Freezing.. I did add a label. This jam will be good for up to a year in the freezer!

Recipe

4 c crushed peaches (or any fruit – with peaches add 3 TBS of lemon juice)
1 pkg. Ball Instant Fruit Pectin
1 ½ c sugar or Splenda, granulated (I used 3 cups of sugar)
5 (8oz) containers or jars for the jam

Stir crushed peaches, sugar, and lemon juice and let sit for 10 minutes. Add package of pectin gradually and stir for three minutes. Laddle into containors. Rest 30 minutes. Enjoy.