The blackberries are mostly gone. It seems like they only last about 2 weeks from ripe to gone. That is OK by me. I picked a bunch of them and made jam and now I don't want to pick any more. I did want a few more batches of jam.
The peaches at Bryant Orchard are ripe and delicious. I don't have to pick them and I don't have to put them through the food mill. A batch of peach jam is EASY in comparison.
I am apparently incapable of easy. I decided to make a batch of peach pineapple jam. I have never made any and the directions on the package of Sure-Jell is for just plain peach jam. I decided to follow the directions and reduce the amount of peaches by the amount of pineapple I wanted to add.
The one thing I do know is that you can't use fresh pineapple in jam or Jell-O. There is something in it that prevents jelling. So use canned pineapple if you choose to make this jam. Or Jell-O for that matter.
Peach Pineapple Jam
3 cups finely chopped peaches
1 cup crushed pineapple
5 1/2 cups sugar
1 package Sure-Jell
1/2 teaspoon butter (optional, to prevent foaming)
Follow the directions in the Sure-Jell package for washing and sterilizing the canning jars. Start a large pot of water boiling on the back of the stove. Turn it to simmer and cover it if it boils before you need it.
Before you start peeling the peaches, place a large waterproof bag in front of the cutting board. Place the peels and the pits in here. When you are done, just tie the top and discard.
The peaches can turn brown on you. The lemon helps to prevent this. But peeling and chopping each peach takes long enough for the peach you just finished to start turning brown. Even if you are really fast.
My method is to peel and slice the peach. Place the slices on the cutting board and chop them until finely chopped. It is OK to have a few larger pieces. Take a lemon half and squeeze some juice over the chopped pile of peaches. Strain the juice through your fingers so you don't get a lemon seed in your jam. Scoop the pile up and place the peaches and lemon in a large measuring cup. Start peeling the next peach.
When you have 3 cups of lemon and peaches, add 1 cup from a can of crushed pineapple, for a total of 4 cups of fruit. Remember, fresh pineapple won't jell, so don't use fresh. If you still have some lemon juice left in your lemon, add that to the fruit.
After this, just follow the directions to make the jam. Basically, you add the Sure-Jell and the butter and bring it to a full rolling boil.
Add the sugar all at once and bring back to a rolling boil.
Then fill the jars that have been in boiled water.
Seal and place the jars in boiling water and boil them for 10 minutes.
I have two different jars of jam opened in the refrigerator, so I haven't tasted this jam yet. I sent one home with a friend, but she is still working on my Four Berry Jam and hasn't tried it. http://www.shenandoahgatewayfarm.blogspot.com/2014/07/four-berry-jam.html
But the jam set and is a beautiful golden orange with floating bits of peach and pineapple. And how bad can something that is more than 50% sugar be, she asked facetiously?