The sweet and delicate flavors of peaches accompanied by the warmth and spiciness of gingers make a comforting culinary pleasure. It’s something everyone loves and recognizes. Peaches are sweet and pleasing while ginger is spicy and rejuvenating making their flavor union a well-loved pair by people. The aroma of peach and ginger jam is irresistible, making it a common ingredient in cocktail mixes and alcoholic drinks. What an invigorating way to cool oneself from the lively Texas sunshine.
Peach & Ginger Jam Trivia
- Peaches are one of the most abundant crops in North America. South Carolina and Georgia consider Peaches as their State Fruit.
- Although Peaches have long been loved by Americans, peaches actually originated in China and are considered a symbol of longevity, immortality, and prosperity.
Peach & Ginger Jam Buying Guide
Peach and Ginger Jams are available in the condiments and jellies section of grocery stores and supermarkets. You can purchase either the commercially packed jams or those produced by artisan families. It’s best to buy peach and ginger jam during the peach and ginger season to celebrate their prime flavors. The best peach and ginger jams are the all-natural varieties since chemical ingredients interfere with the aroma and flavors of ginger.
Peach & Ginger Jam Production & Farming in Texas
Peaches are one the of sturdiest trees are can grow in hot summers and cold temperatures. In the US, the top peach-producing states include California, Virginia, New York, Michigan, and Washington, among others due to their appropriate temperatures. Some people may even find it surprising that Georgia is not included in the top peach-producing states in the US, despite the famous term “Georgia Peach.” Peach Trees can be successfully grown in Texas. In fact, peaches thrive in North Texas and can survive the heat and cold winters. Loring, Redskin, Dixieland, Harvester, and Red Globe are just some of the peach varieties grown in Texas.
Preservatives and Chemicals
Jams, jellies, and preserves have four basic ingredients including fruit, pectin, acid, and sugar
Pectin is essential to form the gel-like consistency of jams and jellies. Adding the right amount of pectin would depend on the fruit’s natural pectin content. For instance, peaches and blueberries have very low pectin content. So, an extra amount of pectin is needed to achieve the desired texture.
Acid is essential to maintain gel formation and as a natural preservative. Some fruits contain an adequate amount of natural acid. Meanwhile, others need additional acid which can be naturally derived from lemon juice. Artificial acids are discouraged since they can have harmful effects on the body.
Sugar also affects gel formation, contributes flavors, and acts as a preservative. Honey is commonly used as a natural preservative. However, commercially produced jams, jellies, and preserves are usually mixed with artificial sugars such as sucrose, glucose, sucralose, and aspartame which can have a long-term damaging impact on a person’s health.
Safely canning jams, jellies, and preserves are essential to maintain their flavors and lengthen their shelf-life. The Boiling Water Method for Peach and Ginger Jam is one of the most reliable. To do this, prepare the canning jars filled with food and completely submerge them in boiling water at 212°F.
Certain measures should be done before doing the boiling water method. Check the cans to ensure they are safe for food packaging and consumption. Look for cracks, chipped edges, and even tiny scratches. Discard the jars if you can find any of these inconsistencies. This is an essential step since any small cracks or chips can be triggered by heat during the boiling process.
Also, check the rubber lid to ensure that there are no mold growths since any mold could spoil an entire glass. Never use the metal covers if there are patches or specks of rust since it can also contaminate the peach and ginger jam, making it unsafe for consumption.
Enjoying Peach & Ginger Jam
The unique flavors of a peach and ginger jam can either make it appealing or horrifying for some people. Peach and ginger jam works best when mixed with tea or even sparkling water as the refreshing flavors are suited for cold beverages. Peach and ginger jam can also be mixed into marinades or bastings for a pork barbecue.
Properly storing peach and ginger Jams is essential for their maximum shelf life. As a standard procedure, any unopened preserves, jams, and jellies can be stored at room temperature for at least a year, given that those should be put in a cool, dry place, away from the direct heat of the sunlight. Once opened, the peach jellies should be refrigerated and consumed within a week if made without preservatives. However, it can be consumed within two weeks or more if it is made with chemical preservatives.
PEACH & GINGER JAM
3090 g peaches (about 36 medium-sized peaches), skinned and roughly chopped, stones discarded
2060 g granulated sugar
125 g fresh ginger (about ½ cup), peeled and finely chopped
260 g lemon juice (about 1 cup)
20 g butter (about 2 tablespoons)
skins of the peaches
1 cup water
Preparing the peaches:
- Wash peaches then use a paring knife to score the bottom of each with an “x”.
- Bring a soup pot filled with water to a boil then reduce to simmer. Drop 6 or 8 peaches into the water at a time, moving them about for approximately 45 seconds. Immediately transfer peaches to a large bowl filled with ice water to cool. Transfer to a bowl.
- Peel skins and reserve them in a small saucepan. Open peaches, discard the stone, then roughly chop the flesh. Place all of the chopped peaches into a bowl and measure by weight.
- Prepare the flavor booster: Add water to peach skins. Bring to a boil, then reduce to simmer and cook for 5 minutes. Strain and reserve liquid.
- Prepare the jam: Measure ingredients by weight, then place chopped peaches, sugar, ginger, lemon juice, and flavor booster into a wide heavy-bottomed pot. Stir to combine.
- Place over medium heat, stirring often, until the sugar dissolves.
- Increase temperature to just shy of high. Bring mixture to a boil, stirring frequently. As mixture begins to bubble, skim and discard foam. Add butter if desired to also calm the foam from rising. Continue stirring mixture frequently as jam cooks.
- DO NOT LEAVE JAM COOKING UNATTENDED, stir frequently!
- When the jam reaches 220°F, remove it from heat. Using a masher, mash any larger pieces of peach pulp that remain. Stir and let the jam sit for 20 minutes.
For home canning:
- Run jars through a hot cycle in a dishwasher without soap, or submerge jars, funnel and ladle in a large pot of boiling water for at least 10 minutes.
- Separate jar lids and rings into two medium-sized bowls and cover with boiling water. Let sit for 10 minutes. Dip tongs in boiling water for a few moments before using them to carefully remove jars from boiling water or dishwasher.
- Place jars onto a clean work surface. Place the sterilized funnel on top of the first jar and scoop cooked jam using the sterilized ladle. Leave ¼-inch of space (headroom) at the top. Use a damp paper or cloth towel to wipe any jam from the rim of the jar.
- Place a sterilized lid on top using a magnet wand or tongs. Place the ring on top and turn just until finger tight. Repeat the process until all jars are filled.
- Transfer filled jars to boiling water and process for 10 minutes.
- Carefully remove jars from the pot, place them onto a work surface, and let cool for 24 hours. Check lids to ensure raised center has depressed, indicating a secure seal.
- Wipe jars clean and store in a cool, dark, and dry place, or gift to someone special.