I'm pre-diabetic, but I still like sweet foods once in a while. The following recipe uses very little sugar, and it's super tasty. When you spread it on toast, for example, it tastes like peach pie.
• 4 cups chopped fruit (about 3 lb. fully ripe peaches; I use freestone peaches, but cling peaches will work, too.)
• 2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
• 1 box fruit pectin
• 1/2 cup sugar (you can use more if you like it sweeter; up to 2 cups)
• large canning pot with elevated basket rack that fits inside
• magnet to pick up sterilized flat lids
• rubber handled jar picker upper
• pint jars with lids made for canning
• jar funnel that fits the mouth of the pint jars
• potato masher
1. Bring the canner — half-full with water — to a simmer. In the meantime, wash the jars and screw bands in hot soapy water, and then rinse with warm water. Pour boiling water over flat lids in a saucepan off the heat. Let them stand in hot water until ready to use. Drain the lids well before using.
2. Peel and pit the peaches. I usually scald the peaches first for a minute or two, then I put them in ice water to make the skins slip off.
3. Finely chop the fruit. Measure about 4 cups of prepared fruit into a 6- or 8-quart saucepot. Add lemon juice and stir until well blended.
4. Mash the peaches until smooth or chunky (your choice; I like chunky).
5. Stir in the pectin. Bring to a full rolling boil (a boil that doesn't stop bubbling when stirred), stirring constantly.
6. Stir in the sugar. Return to full rolling boil and boil exactly 1 minute, stirring constantly.
7. Remove from heat. Skim off any foam with a metal spoon.
7. Ladle the hot fruit immediately into prepared jars, filling to within 1/4 inch of tops. Wipe off the jar rims and threads. Cover with the 2-piece lids, and then screw the lids on tightly.
8. Place the filled jars on the elevated rack. Lower the rack into the canner with hot water. Be careful. The jars are already hot, so there's only a little chance they will break. If you're using proper materials, there's almost no chance. The water must cover the jars by 1 to 2 inches (add boiling water, if necessary). Cover and bring water to a gentle boil for 10 minutes.
9. Remove the jars and place them upright on towel to cool completely. After the jars cool, check the seals by pressing the middle of lid with finger. If the lid springs back, the lid is not sealed and refrigeration is necessary.
Here's my yummy toast covered with jam.