apricots, berries, peaches and apples) are naturally higher in pectin, so you don't need to add store bought or homemade pectin to them.
In the end, although this peach jam is delish, I can't say I think no-pectin-added jam is any better than the pectin-added variety. And it took a considerably longer to cook down and jell than any jams I've made with added pectin. Nonetheless, it's nice to know I can make pectin-free jam, if I want to.
How to Make Peach Jam without Added Pectin
(recipe from The Ball Blue Book, 1984)
8 cups of peeled, pitted, crushed peaches (I used about 8 large peaches)*
1/2 cup water
6 cups granulated sugar**
1. Pour the prepared peaches and the water into a large, non-reactive pot. Gently heat for 10 minutes.
2. Stir in the sugar. Slowly bring to a boil, stirring often.
3. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, stirring often to prevent scorching, until the jam jells. To test for jelling, place a saucer in the refrigerator. Once it's cold, spoon a small amount of the jam onto the saucer and place in the freezer. If the jam jells after a couple of minutes in the freezer, it's done.
|Simmer down the jam.|
|The jam once it "jells."|
* To learn how to peel peaches the old fashioned way, click here. Or get yourself a soft fruit peeler; to my mind, that is the only way to go!
In addition, your job will be much easier if you buy freestone peaches. (Cling peaches are difficult to pit.)
** Sugar both helps the jam "jell" (or set), and helps preserve the finished product. You may adjust the amount of sugar in this recipe, but it may not jell well, and it won't last as long in the cupboard.
*** If you live at a high altitude, read this important information about adjusting canning times.