I put these beauties in a jar quick – before they got away. The taste is unadulterated nectarine, lusty and sweet, with just a touch of heat & savory. Yowsa!
4 & 3/4 cups sugar (I use raw)
2 large lemons
6 sprigs summer savory
20 white peppercorns, freshly ground (use mortar & pestle if you have one)
1. Prepare an icy water bowl or very clean sink with the juice of 1 lemon. Blanch whole nectarines in boiling water for one minute, just until the skins start to split. Dunk quickly in the icy water bath.
2. Peel, bit and slice peaches. place in a non-reactive preserving pan with sugar & juice of one lemon. heat on low until sugar is melted. turn up heat to medium-high and bring just to a simmer.
3. Place mixture in a large bowl, bury savory sprigs within. let cool, then place in fridge or another cool place overnight.
2. Separate fruit from syrup by either draining in a colander or using a slotted spoon (or both). place syrup in preserving pan and bring to 221 degrees. skim foam off top if needed. add nectarine slices, remove the sprigs of savory as you are doing so. Add the ground white pepper to the pan, bring to the boil again on high heat. Boil for 5 minutes.
3. Test the set by first turning the heat off. place a teaspoon of the preserve on a frozen plate. place plate back in freezer for 30 seconds or so. Run your finger across the plate and through the mixture. If it wrinkles, even slightly, it is sufficiently set. If your finger makes a clean break, place the pan back on high heat and boil for another minute. Try again.
4. hot water bath process for 5 minutes. And trust me I know it’s hard, but please, once you get a taste…