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Canning, Freezing and Preserving Peaches From a Local Orchard

By: Tommy B

Wow, can you believe it’s that time again!  It seems like yesterday that I wrote last summer’s posts on canning peaches and applesauce!  Well, it’s peach time once again and I’m full blast getting plenty of them put up for lots of winter and spring smoothies!

This is the second year in a row I haven’t canned any peaches.  I know the value of canning and the less ecological impact they have on natural resources (a one time electrical/gas use versus using an electric freezer to store them for the next 9 months), but I will make up for it next month when I can my annual 30-35 quarts of applesauce!  I will get better and live more inline with how my actions affect not only me but the environment, but in the same breath, I do what I can.

Anyway, none of my peach trees produced even a single peach this year because of a couple late frosts we got here in the “mountains”, but I was fortunate to follow a friends lead to a great local orchard not far from my house!  It was a interesting setup and the man I met started it over 40 years ago!  He was a typical old timer of these parts – very friendly talk your ear off kind of person and you could tell he worked hard his whole life, but did what he loved.  The funny thing I remember about him was seeing that he must have just eaten a peach, because he had traces of gold shiny sparkles around his mouth.  It was neat to see even after 40+ years of growing peaches he still ate them!

This is how I prepare my peaches for the deep freeze (some people squak at leaving the skins on!)

1) Wash peaches well

2) Cut peaches into small chunks, being sure to remove all stems, seeds and bad spots

3) Pack cut peaches into quart bags

4) Place them in the freezer

5) Now it’s your turn.  Go to your farmer’s market or local orchard and buy at least a 1/2 bushel of apples and spend a few hours in the evening or weekend and process them.  If you want a lot of smoothies, buy 1 1/2 – 2 bushels like I did!

6) Let me know how it turns out.

 

canning food post image 1

Local peaches cleaned, bagged and ready for the freezer

canning food post image 2
Daddy’s little helper!

 

 

 


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Comments (8)

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  1. Lois says:

    Our peach season was so short I completely missed it. I almost bought a freezer for my home this year, then talked myself out of the additional cost to run it. I have a dehydrator and am using that to preserve most of my food this year.

  2. Canningmama says:

    Do you have trouble getting just the right amount of fruit out of your bag for your morning smoothie? If so, lay your cut (or whole if it’s berries)furit out on a cookie sheet and freeze them first; then bag them. You can get individual pieces out without any trouble. I freeze a lot of fruits for smoothies as well; peaches, blackberries, strawberries, blueberries, cherries, raspberries, bananas, etc. (in the peel once they’re too soft on the counter to use).

  3. Canningmama says:

    Oh, and my least favorite thing ever is peeling stuff; I rarely peel my peaches either. For jam, butter, drying, or salsa, I peel them; otherwise, in goes the peel!

  4. Lois, I haven’t done a lot of dehydrating (except for venison sometimes), but that is on my mind to learn more about and do. Thanks for the added motivation.

    Jenny, thanks for the tip! I’ve done that with blueberries and yeah, it makes sense with peaches and other fruits too! Yeah, basically when I open a quart bag of peaches I have to use the whole quart in a few days because I have to thaw the whole thing out!

  5. Melanie says:

    Hi there. I am so inspired! I have never made a peach preserve and I am looking for a good recipee. I dont like to use pectin. any ideas are much appreciated!

  6. Hi Mel, I haven’t made preserves but have friends who do. Check out my friend’s blog and ask her because she is super busy canning/freezing all the time: http://www.flowersandvegetablegardens.blogspot.com

  7. Farmgal74 says:

    Hi Melanie,

    I discovered something this year and I hope it may help some people. I don’t like to use pectin either. It is my biggest expense when it comes to making jams. However, this year my neighbor let me pick her fig tree. I made Strawberry/ Fig preserves with no pectin. The figs are almost like syrup when they are cooked. I know that fig trees are rare, but if you homestead I would encourage you to get one and plant it in your orchard. They have little flavor and can be mixed with any fruit. The jam I made was Very good. Hope this helps.

  8. Mathias says:

    to leave core/seeds/and skin on apple. Would it possibly be the seeds (i.e., peitcn?) that would have caused it to solidify instead of remaining like apple sauce/butter? I also used apple cider vinegar. Thank you –

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