I really cannot keep any of this jam because my friends keep stealing it all! It’s got just the right amount of sweet peaches and spicy basil. I think it’s my new go to jam.
I have been canning since my grandfather taught me how to make strawberry jam when I was about 12 years old. I remember cutting what seemed like millions of overripe strawberries so my hands turned a brilliant shade of pink. At 12, that was quite a badge of honor, I was glad when it took a few days to wash off.
So anyways, I am heavily involved in my local 4-H club and county and this year I am teaching a “Food Preservation” project. The first meeting I wanted the kids to make a simple jam recipe and peaches were on sale at the farmers market. Probably the last ones of the season. The kids did a fantastic job, but didn’t use all the lovely peaches.
I got to thinking that I still had a decent amount of basil and I wonder how it would taste if I added the basil to the jam. So I did. Why not?
I know what you’re thinking… peach and basil? Sounds weird. I understand. It does sound weird. Let me put it this way. Every single person that has tried it, wanted more. Without fail. So, just trust me, make it, you won’t be sorry.
So if you have never canned before, I recommend you try it. It may seem daunting at first but the more you do it, the easier it gets and it will open up a whole new way of saving ripe fruits and veggies while they are in season. You can find a ton of step by step instructions all over the internet and who knows? Maybe I’ll set up a step by step guide the next time I can!
- 11 cups peaches, chopped small
- 8 ½ cups sugar
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- 2 boxes of powdered pectin (1.75 ounce each)
- 1 large bunch of basil, chopped finely
- In a food processor, pulse the peaches until almost smooth or chunkier if you like fruit in your jam.
- Put the fruit into a large heavy-bottomed pot. Add sugar and over medium high heat, bring the fruit and sugar mixture to a full rolling boil. Stir frequently. Boil for 5 minutes, turning down the heat if necessary. Add the pectin, mix completely. Boil another 2 minutes.
- Remove the pot from the heat and add the pectin, stirring to mix completely. Boil another 5 minutes and a low boil. Turn off heat, skim any foam off the top.
- Ladle the hot jam mixture into sterile half-pint jars, leaving ¼-inch headspace. Wipe jar rims clean, cover with hot lids and screw on the jar bands until finger touch. Process the jars for 10 minutes in a hot water bath. Let cool for 24 hours. Refrigerate any that don’t seal.