Sunny Ontario Peach Conserve

Sunny Ontario Peach Conserve

Traditionally served with toast. Try this sunny fruit conserve as an accompaniment to grilled poultry or meat.

14 ripe Ontario Peaches (about 3 1/2 lbs/1.5 kg)
6 (1.5 L ) cups sugar
2 oranges
1 cup ( 250 mL) unsweetened applesauce
1 cup (250 mL) seedless raisins
2 tbsp (25 mL ) lemon juice
1 cup (250 mL ) maraschino cherries with juice, quartered
1/2 cup (125 mL) brandy

Peel, pit and chop peaches. In large saucepan, combine peaches and sugar. Peel oranges and reserve rind. Chop oranges and add to peach mixture. Finely chop rind; place in small saucepan. Cover with water; bring to boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Drain and reserve rind.

Meanwhile, add applesauce, raisins, lemon juice and cherries with juice to peach mixture. Mix well.

Cook over high heat, stirring constantly, until boiling. Reduce heat and cook at a gentle boil, stirring frequently, until mixture thickens, approximately 1 hour. Add reserved orange rind and cook 5 minutes longer or until desired thickness.

Remove from heat; add brandy; stir and cool for 5 minutes. Ladle mixture into hot sterilized half-pint (250 mL) jars, leaving 1/4 inch (5 mm) head space. Cover with new lids which have been boiled 5 minutes; apply screw bands fingertip tight. Process in boiling water canner 10 minutes. Store in dark, dry, cool place up to one year.

Makes about 9 half-pint (250 mL) jars.

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