yields approximately 1 pint
1. Juice half of a large lemon (~2 Tbs of lemon juice) into a 9 or 10” skillet or saucepan, stainless steel or enameled cast iron preferably. Save spent rind for zesting later.
2. Peel 1-1.5lbs peaches (which is about 2-3 medium sized peaches) and roughly chop directly into the lemon juice. Combine the peach pieces with the juice as you add them.
3. Add 1 cup sugar to the skillet and place over low heat until sugar granules have melted. Increase heat to medium high and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally to keep bottom from scorching. After about 5 minutes, mash (for chunkier jam) or use a hand-held blender (for smoother jam) the now-softened peach pieces.
You’ll know your jam is done when the bubbles have spaced out, and they are larger and the jam takes on a glassier, slightly darker hue. Depending on your pot, this will take anywhere from 8-10 minutes. The gel point is 221 degrees F, remove the pot from heat and use a thermometer or chilled spoons on a plate to determine whether or not your jam has set to your liking.
4. Add a few shavings of lemon zest from reserved rind and/or any other flavor additions (1/4 tsp vanilla extract or bourbon) or steep herbs like a tied-up bundle of sage or a teaball of lavender. Ladle jam into a just-cleaned (hot, soapy water) jar. Let cool on countertop for an hour or so, then store in the refrigerator for up to 3 months.
Me, making jam in the great outdoors, like you do. p.s. if you met me at the Mueller Farmers’ Market on Sunday and want to make the super-small batch fig jam I demo’ed there, visit this post for the recipe.