Written by Chelsa
We have peaches up to our eyeballs! Our tree is absolutely loaded down with them. Even after knocking off several peaches earlier in the year, the branches are sagging with the weight of these delicious golden globes of fruity perfection. The tangy, sweet, juicy goodness of these fruits makes my mouth water just thinking about them! This is the first year we've ever really had a bumper crop with this tree. It seems like something always happens, hail storms or late freezes, to keep us from enjoying our peaches. But not this year, God in his mercy allowed us to have more than enough.
So what do you do when their is a mountain of peaches at your disposal?
- Eat them! Savor them! Let the juice drip off your chin as you gobble them up!
- Sell em!
- Freeze them so you can enjoy them all year long!
That's what we did anyway. We all worked together to put up as many freezer bags full as we had room for. This is how we did it:
- Fill bucket after bucket after bucket after buckets with peaches (be gentle, they'll bruise!)
- Take them in the house and wash them in the sink
- Get 2 large pots and fill them half full with water- one for boiling water, one for ice water
- Sort through peaches and find the ones that are barely ripe (a little bit soft to the touch). If you get the mushy ones they don't store well (just stuff them in your mouth right now and eat them... they're the sweetest ones of all), and the hard ones don't taste good.
- When your big pot of boiling water is ready, gently spoon 10 peaches into the pot. Let them boil for one minute to loosen the skins.
- Use a slotted spoon to remove the peaches. Put them in a colander to drain, then put them in the pot of ice water. Let them stay there for a minute or so to cool off.
- Now get a big cutting board, knives, compost/trash bucket, ziplock bags, permanent marker, and towels (they are a big juicy mess!). You will also need a medium sized bowl with a quart of water and a TBSP of lemon juice to put your sliced peaches in to keep them from turning brown.
- Remove peaches from ice water and place them on the cutting board. Slice them in half before you pull off the skin because it's super hard to cut them with the skin already off--too slippery!!! Remove pit, and slice.
- Put sliced peaches into lemon juice water and the skin and pit in the compost bucket (trash)
- Label and date your freezer bags. Then with a slotted spoon, gently ladle peaches and some juice into bags. Try to remove as much air as possible when you zip them shut.
- I like to put my finished bags on cookie sheets and put them in the freezer so they will be flat and easier to stack later. =)