Sunday, September 14, 2014

Roasted Peaches in Vanilla Syrup

Peaches are truly Summer's gold. It's hard to pinpoint another piece of produce so rich in colour, flavour and sweetness, oozing pale amber, sticky and fragrant nectar with every bite at their peak. Sinking your teeth into the fuzzy, soft fruit is nothing short of divine for members of my family, especially since real, local and truly ripe peaches have a season just as fleeting as perfect snowflakes in Winter.

Roasted Peaches in Vanilla SyrupLuckily for us, though, perfect Summer peaches are plentiful in that short window, and take kindly to freezing and canning when eating them fresh just isn't possible (it's hard, even for three peach-aholics like us, to eat a bushel+ a week!). By saving them in various ways, we're never at a loss for a taste of Summer even if there's 3 feet of snow outside! This year, along with jam and a "butter" type spread (made by combining zucchini and peaches!) I made this decadent dessert topping. Simplicity and elegance in one, opening a jar reveals chopped, peeled peaches from a nearby orchard swimming in a peach nectar and vanilla syrup that I thickened ever so slightly with gelling (pectin-containing) sugar. While a batch or two did make it into the canner (and this year's Christmas gift stash), I couldn't resist saving a couple BIG jars for us to crack into right away... and let me tell you Sunday pancakes and weekday morning oatmeal have never been the same!

Shared with Gluten Free Fridays and Waste Not Want Not Wednesday 

Roasted Peaches in Vanilla Syrup
Makes 3 pints, 12 servings
3 ½ cups peeled and chopped peaches (fresh, frozen/thawed, or 1 29-oz can in water)
1 ¾ cups water
1 tbsp lemon juice
6 oz jelling sugar (a pectin-sugar combination)
2 tbsp vanilla extract
seeds from ½ vanilla bean
  1. Heat the oven to 400F and line a baking sheet with silpat or parchment.
  2. Spread peaches in one layer on the sheet and roast 10-15 minutes, until beginning to caramelize.
  3. Let cool, then roughly chop and transfer to a pot with water, lemon juice, sugar and vanilla seeds.
  4. Bring to a boil and cook (at a full boil) for 4 minutes, stirring constantly.
  5. Remove from heat, cool 1 minute (stirring gently), then stir in vanilla extract.
  6. Ladle into jars and seal.
  7. Process in a water-bath for 25 minutes.
Amount Per Serving (includes all syrup (lap it up!))
Calories: 75.6
Total Fat: 0.1 g
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 0.0 mg
Total Carbs: 19.8 g
Dietary Fiber: 1.0 g
Protein: 0.4 g