I’ve been playing around with a couple different variations on this recipe. I think my favorite is spiced with vanilla bean, but I also really enjoy a version with warm pie spices: cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, some ground ginger. WHITE NECTARINE PRESERVES
(Makes: I forgot to write down how many half pint jars. 7? I think it was 7.)
Cook Time: an hour, plus overnight to macerate the fruit.
- 4 1/2 lbs. white nectarines, pits removed and sliced into quarters
- 2 1/2 c. sugar
- 1 1/2 oz. lemon juice
- optional: 1 vanilla bean
In a large, nonreactive pot, combine the sliced nectarines, sugar, and lemon juice. If you want to add the vanilla bean, scrape the seeds into the fruit mixture and then nestle the pod in with the sliced fruit as well. Cover with saran wrap (right up against the fruit to prevent browning) and refrigerate for around 24 hours.
Bring boiling water canner to a boil and prepare jars and lids. Cook the jam, stirring to prevent burning, until it gels (click here if you don’t know what I’m talking about) or reaches 220 degrees on a candy thermometer. About half way through the cooking time, I mashed the fruit up with a potato masher to make it more of a jammy consistency. You don’t have to; you could leave the fruit in bigger pieces to make it more like a preserve. Alternatively, run half of the cooked jam through a food mill to remove the skins and really make it like a jam instead of a preserve (thicker, with fewer big chunks of fruit). It’s up to your own personal preference.
Ladle hot jam into hot, clean jars leaving 1/4″ headspace. Process for 10 minutes, adjusting for altitude as necessary.
P.S. You could make this recipe with yellow nectarines too, but you might not need as much lemon juice since they’re more acidic than white nectarines. Taste them and see.