Roasted Peach and Knob Creek Bourbon Jam

There are certain flavor combinations that make me think of certain loved ones.  Peaches and bourbon make me think of my roommate, Meaghan.  This jam is inspired by her.  Peach jam recipes often call for blanching the fruit to loosen their skins, but I think roasting them is a much better way of loosening the skins while magnifying their flavor.  A shot of your best bourbon (since the flavor will be concentrated) makes the peaches somehow peachier.  Stirring the vanilla in at the last moment adds a perfect, rounded warmth to the jam.  This is ridiculously delicious, and I can’t recommend it highly enough.  As Meaghan said, “it is nectar of the gods.”  Happy eating! -Amanda

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Roasted Peach and Knob Creek Bourbon Jam

Yields 24 ounces
3 pounds fresh peaches
3 tablespoons Knob Creek Bourbon
1 1/2 cups organic unrefined cane sugar
1 lemon, juiced
1 pinch salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:
1.Preheat oven to 375 Fahrenheit.
2. Cut peaches in half and remove the pit.  Roast for 30 minutes.  Remove and let cool slightly.  When cool enough to handle remove the skins.
3. In a food processor, pulse the peaches until a smooth pulp forms.
4. Put a small plate in the freezer.
5. Combine the peaches, bourbon, sugar, lemon juice and salt in a large saucepan.  Bring to a boil, then knock back to a simmer for 1 hour.  Skim any foam that forms on the surface.
6. Meanwhile, sterilize jam jars by placing them on a baking tray in a 200 Fahrenheit oven.  Sterilize the lids in boiling water.
7. After 1 hour, remove the plate from the freezer.  Drop a small dollop of jam on the plate and let set.  Run your finger through it.  Do you like the consistency?  If so, you’re ready to process.  If not, continue cooking the jam at 10 minute intervals, testing for your desired thickness.
8. Stir in the vanilla extract.
9. Ladle the hot jam into the sterilized jars, leaving 1/2 inch from the top.  Top with a lid and screw on until just tight.
10. Process the jars in boiling water for 15 minutes.
11. Let cool on the counter until you hear the seal pop.  If it pops, it is shelf stable.  If not, store in the fridge.

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