Thursday, September 29, 2011

Peaches!!

This past weekend was packed full of canning, canning, and more canning.

Day One: pressure canning using my All-American 30 Qt hoss. I prepared then canned Barbecue Beans, cubed fresh pumpkin (from pie pumpkins bought at the Farmers Market), and extremely thick sliced smoked hickory bacon from our local meat market. I also put together a batch of Sweet and Spicy Pickles and cultured some buttermilk.


I tested out different "milks" for the buttermilk. In the large jar I used Organic 2% milk and added 1/2 c. non-fat buttermilk. I then reconstituted some of our LDS powdered milk, added 1/2 c. buttermilk to that and divided it into 2 Qt jars. I let them set out for 24hrs on the counter to thicken then placed in the fridge to store. The powdered milk was excellent and creamy, not too watery. The 2%, as you could imagine, was super thick. Our powdered milk was from LDS cannery and during my prepping to make the buttermilk I sneaked in a sip "just to taste it".  I screwed up my face in preparation for nasty chalky watered-down awfulness. Instead, my taste buds were pleasantly surprised when I noticed hints of vanilla and a creamy milky texture. I really liked this powdered milk! After Cowboy tasted it and claimed the same surprise, we decided this powdered goodness will be joining us on camping trips from hence-forth. Of course we prefer real milk overall, but this was good for ease of use and storage.

The next morning we decided to make a "food storage" breakfast. LDS waffle mix with homemade buttermilk (instead of milk), reconstituted powdered whole egg, and applesauce with a little bit of oil. We then rehydrated some freeze-dried strawberries. We cheated a little by using some Redi-whip (but hey we had it on hand so that kind of counts!) to top it all off. It was DELICIOUS!

Day Two: Second day was dedicated to water bath canning. This day I made three different types of peach jam: Sweet Basil Peach, Peach Cardamom, and Traditional Peach Jam. Then I canned Roasted Red Pepper Spread and sliced peaches: 2 Qts regular peaches in medium syrup using raw sugar, 1 Qt Spiced Peaches, and 1 Qt Brandied Peaches.

My counter filled with canned goodness

Finally my masterpiece discovery: BACON JAM. I wasn't sure how this would turn out but as a lover of all things bacon-y, I just had to try it! WOW-ZA! Saying it was fabulous would be an understatement. First time 'round I ate it just as Foodie with Family had- crusty rustic bread slathered with bacon jam and topped with a fried over-easy egg. Sloppy and soooo heavenly. Second time I spread it on a piece of toast coated with peanut butter. Yep, this is my new favorite food (eaten sparingly of course). It is hard to describe this jam. Smokey, barbecue-y, sweet, and tangy, and bacon-y. It's amazing and you should try it.

Still caramelizing, before putting into food processor

Online Foodie with Family doesn't actually "can" this recipe but I don't see why you couldn't. It being meat, I would suppose it should be pressure canned. Next batch I will step up and try canning it. I have a feeling if anything bad happened to the world this stuff could easily be used as top shelf currency!