Back in August, I was able to get some western slope peaches right after they’d been harvested. Now, if you’ve never had peaches fresh off the tree, allowed to ripen on the tree and picked that morning (or the day before, at the earliest) you don’t know what you are missing.
One of my husband’s coworkers is a member of the Knights of Columbus, and the KoC were doing their annual fundraiser. Every year at the end of June, they get people to pre-order cases of peaches. In the middle of August, when the harvest is well in season (to make sure they are freshly picked) they get a semi-truck and go collect all the boxes of peaches, and you get to go pick them up one day.
I ordered two 18 pound boxes this year. Out of that, I made three pies (two are in the freezer now, waiting ’til January when we need something to remind us of summer in the cold, white of winter), a cobbler, two batches of peach butter and one of peach marmalade. The marmalade was an experiment. And there were still a few peaches left over for eating.
When I can things like butters, jellies, jams, and such, there’s always a jar that doesn’t get completely filled up. I still process it like normal, but then we get to eat that one jar immediately. The rest, we don’t get to eat until … well, tradition in my family had it until the first snow. However, I lived in the South for too many years. The “first” snow after canning might not be for a year or two. So, I figured when the first snow from home was likely to be (usually sometime in early November) and arbitrarily picked November first.
As I said, the peach marmalade was an experiment. I hate marmalade. But then, all I’ve ever had were orange marmalades. My husband, however, loves marmalades. After making two batches of butter and the other things I made, I still had enough peaches left over for one more batch of something. So, I started looking for recipes for peach stuff, and found a marmalade recipe. I decided to try it, figuring that even if I didn’t like it, the hubby would love it.
The partial jar of marmalade didn’t even last 2 days. Now, to be fair, we were hosting my husband’s brother and girlfriend that weekend, but still. That stuff was so good, and it hadn’t even had the time to age, to let all the flavors marry enough. It was just a hint of what it would become. My brother-in-law wanted a jar right then, and I told him only if he could promise not to eat it until November. He looked at me like I was crazy.
So, today is November first. It’s been hard to resist for all of us, at times over the last two months we’ve each said something about “do we REALLY have to wait until November?” After all, the first snow of the season was two weeks ago. By my family’s tradition, we could already have been eating that peachy goodness!
Due to some unexpected things happening yesterday, I just forgot to get the bacon out of the freezer so we could have eggs, bacon, and homemade biscuits for breakfast. So, we’ll just have to wait one more day.
It’s not that much longer now. And we’ve already waited so long for it. One more day won’t hurt. Why, yes, where the canning stuff is concerned, I always feel like a child waiting to open her presents on her birthday. Is it time yet? Is it time yet? How about now? 🙂
The wait will be so worth it, the flavors will have had the time they needed to come to the full potential they just hinted at in August. I just have one question…
Is it tomorrow yet? 🙂
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