This doesn’t last as long as regular preserves, but it will probably be eaten quickly! I like to use sterilized jelly jars just on general principles. Be sure to label them for use within two weeks. If you have good peaches, you can leave out all the spices.
2 cups peeled cubed, sliced or chopped peaches (It usually takes me about 5 peaches)
3 tablespoons cane sugar (you may want to add more, depending on your peaches and your personal taste)
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
A pinch of salt (if you want it)
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
First, get a microwave-proof quart bowl and combine the peeled and chopped peaches, sugar, cornstarch, ginger, allspice, and salt (if you’re going to use it). You want the peaches to come up no more than about a third of the way in the bowl. Microwave on high for 3 minutes without a cover. Keep an eye on it so you’ll know how your microwave cooks this recipe. You’ll be more comfortable knowing whether it might start to boil over or not.
Next, stir it well and give it another 3 or 4 minutes or until it starts to thicken. Remove it from the microwave and use a potato masher or a fork to break up any large pieces. Stir until it is the right consistency for spreading.
Add the lemon juice, stir, and set it aside until it is cooled a bit. At this point cover it and put it in the refrigerator until it thickens. It is best to leave it in overnight or at least for several hours. You can also put it in individual little jelly jars. Label so folks will know it must be used within two weeks.
This recipe gets better as you make it. You get to know just how long to cook it to your taste and just what spices you want (I sometimes use a pinch of ground cloves). Each batch will be better as you experiment.
If you find you enjoy making this recipe, just substitute whatever fruit is in season and change the spices accordingly.