Peach Nectarine Butter Recipe
Washington State Stone Fruit arrived last week I made low sugar nectarine preserves from one of my pal Sean Timberlake's recipes. Sean is the brains behind the do-it-yourself site Punk Domestics and a canning expert. I also made a combination peach and nectarine butter from another recipe I'd used in the past.
I�m always eager for opportunities to adapt recipes and put my own spin on them and when it came to these recipes I was inspired to use some samples of bitters and an amaro from Greenbar Distillery. While it's typical to use them in cocktails, I asked Sean about the safety of using these ingredients as well as a bit of spice in canning. Here�s what he said, �Adding a small amount of alcohol or spices should not significantly impact the total acidity in a preserve of high-pH fruit (such as peaches and cherries). If desired, add a little ReaLemon (5% acidity citric solution) to offset it.�
With Sean's reassurance, I used a tablespoon of Grand Poppy amaro in the nectarine preserves, and just a teaspoon of saffron bitters in the fruit butter. You don�t really taste it in either, but it adds lovely aromatic properties. With the preserves recipe I didn�t use any liquid with the nectarines because some of the fruit was very juicy. If you're wondering about Grand Poppy, it's an amaro that�s bittersweet and includes California poppy, orange, lemon, grapefruit, bearberry, California bay leaf, pink peppercorn, dandelion, blessed thistle, burdock, rue, artichoke, gentian, geranium, cherry bark and a bit of cane sugar.
Peach Nectarine Butter, adapted from The All New Ball Book of Canning and Preserving
Makes 6 1/2 pint jars
10 cups of coarsely chopped and pitted peaches and nectarines, no need to peel
1/4 cup water
2 teaspoons lemon zest
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3 cups sugar
1-2 teaspoons Greenbar saffron bitters
Place the peaches and nectarines in a large pot with the water, lemon zest and lemon juice. Cook it over medium heat until the fruit is very tender. Use a stick blender to puree the mixture. Add the sugar and simmer for 30 minutes or until thick enough to cling onto a spoon. Add the bitters and stir.
Lade into hot prepared jars (washed with hot soapy water). Leave 1/4 inch head space, wipe the rim of the jar if necessary. Apply the lid and twist on the band. Gently place in your canner or a large pot of water with a rack in it. The water should be 2 inches above the jars. Cover and boil for 10 minutes. Let cool for 5 minutes then remove let cool.