The last few years I've been learning a lot more about preserving and canning fresh fruits and vegetables. Last years' huge peach haul (seriously, huge!) resulted in Peach Rosemary Jam, Vanilla Bean Peach Blackberry Jam, Drunken Peaches, Peaches in Vanilla Bean Syrup, Peaches in Rosemary Syrup, Sweet Tea Peaches, Peach Ale Mustard, even an attempt at almond extract made with the pits and when I was out of jars, I vacuumed sealed and froze the remaining prepped peaches for use in peach cobblers and other peach desserts through the winter. Thanks to Peach Tree Farm & Greenhouse for the wonderful peaches!
(Peach haul from 2021. All recipes from, or adapted slightly, from Ball Canning Books. Ball Canning Back to Basics & The All New Ball Book of Canning and Preserving; links are affiliated.
This year, peach season is just on the cusp, but I was lucky enough to grab a half-bushel. After making my peach cobbler for our Fourth of July gathering, I had enough to try a very small batch of Pickled Peaches. It must have been destined for me to try them because the next day I found a recipe for some in a local publication.
However, since I like to do research and see how other people do things, I found some other recipes to play with. So, taking the basics from a few different recipes but still keeping with canning & preserves safety practices, I created a recipe all my own. They turned out great!
I would like to let you know, if you've never had pickled peaches, please try them. They are nearly a misnomer because they do not have an overly acidic quality to them as most fruits and vegetables that are pickled do. This is just another way to preserve them.
* Another thing I should tell you, this is not a shelf-stable recipe, these go directly in the refrigerator. *
This recipe will make 2-pint jars and 1 half-pint; like I said, very small batch. It's perfect for those just wanting to try them and have a few extra peaches laying around.
Small Batch Pickled Peaches
6 ripe peaches
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup white vinegar
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup water
4 cinnamon sticks
6 whole cloves Please note depending on how well you pack your jars, you may need to make more liquid. On the stovetop, bring the sugar, vinegars, water, cinnamon sticks and cloves to a boil. Prepare peaches, either in halves or slices, and place in sanitized jars with pit side up. Add a cinnamon stick and some cloves to the jars and pour the pickling liquid over the peaches. Tighten lids and refrigerate. *Again, this is not a shelf-stable recipe per safe canning practices.
(Pictured; Pickled Peaches, Prosciutto and Mozzarella with basil.)