It’s peach season! We visited our local orchard and got a bushel of the juiciest, sweetest yellow peaches you can imagine! After we ate a few and had peach juice dripping down our chins, this is what we did with the rest of them.
Frozen for smoothies and cobblers and snacks
I blanched some whole peaches for a couple minutes in boiling water to get rid of the enzymes that will degrade the peaches over time. Doing this allows the skins to come off easily, too. Then I took out the pits, sliced them, and laid them on a baking sheet to freeze so they wouldn’t stick together. Once frozen, I put them all in gallon zip lock bags Then it’s easy to pull out however many are needed at a time.
This was the first time I ever made jam!! It was a lot of work, but the end result was worth it. We first blanched, removed skins, removed the pitts, and chopped the peaches. Then they go into a stock pot with sugar, pectin, and some lemon juice. Cook until thick. Put into canning jars while it is still hot, cap with new lids, and tighten down. They should all seal soon after, as you’ll know by the “pop” and the lids will be sucked down. The lemon juice provides enough acid so you don’t have to pressure cook. The peaches turn a beautiful shade of pastel pinkish-orange, and the jam tastes divine!!
Peach Pit Tincture
I learned about using peach pits as medicine years ago from Kiva Rose, who has a wonderful write-up on her site. Many people use peach leaf and bark for medicine making, but not many use the pits. I was glad to learn about it since I don’t have easy access to peach trees for leaves and twigs, but I can buy peaches at my local orchard and get as many pits as I like.
I made my first peach pit tincture several years ago to use for anxiety. I had put it in a spray bottle, and anytime I was exceptionally nervous, I just had one spray onto my tongue and I instantly relaxed. I also have used it as a nervine in formulas, especially when I want to sweeten up the flavor. The taste of the fresh, ripe peaches in this medicine is something to swoon for! I’m just about out of that original tincture now.
To make the tincture, I simply filled a quart jar with fresh peach pits that I had let dry out for a couple days. Then I poured 100 proof vodka over them, put a lid on, labeled the jar, and left it to sit and brew for several weeks in the cupboard. Easy, peasy.