Sunday, August 14, 2011

Freezing Peaches

Here at Full Circle Farm, we do have a half dozen peach trees of various sizes. But the squirrels generally carry off the lion's share of peaches way before they ripen. 

So for freezing we purchase seconds from High Hill Orchard in Meriden, Connecticut, a 20 pound case at a time. While not organic, these peaches are ecologically grown with a minimum of spray.

If you have adequate freezer space available, freezing is easier than canning, and yields an equally satisfying product.
To prepare your peaches you will need:
  • wide mouth pint can/freeze jars
  • sugar or preferred sweetener
  • ascorbic acid (vitamin C)
  • unbleached wax paper

Cut small sheets of wax paper and crumple them to roughly
the size and shape of the canning jar lid.
Peel your peaches and slice them into a large measuring cup.  When you get a full quart of peaches, pour them into a large bowl.
Since we often purchase "seconds," we take care to cut out any bad spots
as we peel and slice the peaches.
Now add one Tablespoon of sugar and 1/4 teaspoon of ascorbic acid and mix well.  Let these ingredients sit in the bowl for awhile, so the sugar and vitamin C crystals dissolve into the peach juice.  Sitting for about the time it takes to slice the next quart of peaches is about right.  (Check to see that graininess has disappeared.)

Now fill your jar, leaving 1/2 - 5/8" for expansion, and tuck your wax paper neatly into the jar opening.  The idea is to keep the peaches from touching the air within the jar and turning brown, purely a cosmetic concern.  The peaches are not "bad" if some brown-ness happens.
Jar with wax paper filler on top.
Clean the top rim of the jar with a clean soft cloth; put on the lid and screw on the ring.  Unlike water bath canning, it is not critical to use brand new lids for this process.

If you look closely, you can see the wax paper smooshed into the top layer of the peaches.
Pop your jars into the freezer and enjoy your peaches all winter!


1 comment:

Christine Wendel Farrugia said...

Amazing to taste a real peach. Thanks for the instructions! Its our first year of peaches (we've been waiting patiently) .