peachy keen, jellybean
So as you well know, I’ve been on a bit of a jam-making spree this summer. Strawberry-rhubarb, red currant, balsamic strawberry, blueberry lavender — I’ve gone a bit berserk.
I decided to add “ginger peach” to the gang yesterday. To add to the fun, I was playing Auntie Poppins yesterday and watching this cute little monkey for the morning:
We went to the farmer’s market and picked up a giant bag of delicious, bursting ripe peaches and a little paper bag of gorgeous multi-colored heirloom grape tomatoes. The tomatoes were for me, but the peaches; oh, the peaches had a far loftier fate. They would lay down their lives and their skins to become a golden, caramelized jam that is so delicious you very well might find yourself licking fingers, plates, spoons and perhaps even other peoples’ fingers.
So Addie and I hung out, listening to records and dancing as I blanched 20 peaches, stripping, chopping and throwing them into my giant yellow Staub pot with sugar and ginger. I never realized how gloriously rosy and pink-cheeked peaches are when you blanch them and peel off the skin. It was enough to make me a little verklempt (to quote the ever lovely Linda Richman).
As the jars cooled, Auntie and Monkey sat on a blanket in the back yard, reading James and the Giant Peach. (And yes, I do different voices for each character. It was an effort to keep Addie’s attention as she tried to shove handfuls of grass into her mouth.)
However, in my dizzy delight of squishing peaches through my hands and Roald Dahl, I didn’t let the jam cook nearly long enough and ended up with thirteen (count ’em!) jars of liquid. So today, I went out, bought more canning lids and proceeded to uncan all the jam and cook it on low heat for about an hour, reducing it to nine jars of caramelized, spicy, burnished rosy gold.
Smeared on some homemade baguette with a triple-cream Brie, it was divine.
If I could pick what I eat the day I die, it will be on the menu.