I saw this recipe for peach butter on the smitten kitchen website last week. I also vowed to make slow-cooked black beans, and Ina's tomato and goat cheese tarts. The black beans I will not mention because they were disappointing at best. The tarts - well, we just talked about that, remember?
This is my life - I read a recipe and then obsess over it. I plan it in my head, dream about how it will taste, and count down the minutes until I can create. Everyone has their thing - this is mine.
Anyway - back to the peach butter. I've never even tasted peach butter. But when I saw an english muffin slathered with it, I could think of nothing else.
Even though the recipe promised a quick cooking time, I found that I needed to cook mine way longer. I doubled the recipe and probably tripled the cooking time. I'll give you the smitten kitchen recipe and you can see what you think. I utilized her measurements and tools to determine when the peach butter has reached the consistency it should have.
We really love it. We've enjoyed it on english muffins, peanut butter sandwiches (makes the perfect packed school lunch), and on plain yogurt.
This is the time of year when you can buy seconds of peaches for a great price. I think I pay $3.95 for a 1/2 peck. This is neither a time-consuming task nor complicated. Make some today and surprise your family with an english muffin slathered with peach butter for breakfast tomorrow!
Peach Butter (courtesy of smitten kitchen)
Yield: 4 cups
4 pounds (1.8 kilograms) peaches
1 cup (237 ml) water
2 cups (400 grams) granulated sugar
Juice of one lemon
Without a food mill: Cut a small “x” in the bottom of each peach. Dip
each into a pot of boiling water for 30 seconds, and then into a bowl
of cold water for a minute. The peels should slide right off. [If you
have a food mill, skip the peeling step and I'll tell you where to use
it in a moment.]
Halve your peaches and remove the pits, then cut each half into
quarters (i.e. 8 chunks from each peach). Place peach chunks and water
in a large pot and bring to a boil. Simmer until peaches are tender,
about 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally to ensure they cook
evenly. If you have a food mill, run them through it to puree them and
remove the skins. If you don’t have a food mill — i.e. you already
peeled your peaches — you can puree in a food processor, blender or with
an immersion blender. I like my peach butter very smooth, but feel free
to leave any amount of texture you prefer.
Return the peaches to the large pot, add the sugar and lemon juice
and bring the mixture to a good strong simmer/gentle boil, cooking them
at this level for 30 to 40 minutes, stirring occasionally in the
beginning and more often near the end, as it thickens up and the fruit
masses risk scorching on the bottom of the pot.
There are several methods to test for doneness: You can drizzle a
ribbon of sauce across the surface; when that ribbon holds its shape
before dissolve into the pot, it is done. Some people use cold or frozen
plates; dollop a spoonful in the middle of one and if no water forms a
ring around it in a couple minutes, it is done. Others use a spoon; if
the butter remains rounded on a spoon for two minutes, it is done. You
can also check the pot itself; the butter is usually done when a wooden
spoon leaves a clear train when scraped across the bottom.
Let peach butter cool, keep it in an airtight
container in the fridge. It should be good for at least two weeks.