This wonderfully refreshing Bellini jam combines the sweetness of peaches with the giggly swagger of champagne. When the ho-hums of January come knocking, can you think of a better way to perk yourself up than with summer fruit and a touch of booze? Like a fresh Bellini during a weekend brunch, these preserves smooth out the creases in life—only with no hangover.
I zip my peaches in the food processor for a smoother texture, but you can chop them coarsely if you prefer your jam a little chunkier. It may be redundant to eat this jam while drinking a Bellini, so feel free to pour yourself a morning mimosa instead. I won't judge you if you don't judge me.
About the author: Stephanie Stiavetti is a writer and cookbook author in San Francisco. Stephanie's cookbook, Melt: the Art of Macaroni and Cheese, celebrates America's favorite dish by recreating it with small production, specialty cheeses. Her food blog, The Culinary Life, is a repository for all things comfort food related, from savory dinners to transcendental desserts.
- Yield:Six (8-ounce) jars of jam
- Active time: 45 minutes
- Total time:1 hour 15 minutes
- 4 pounds frozen peaches, defrosted
- 1 cup decent quality champagne
- 1 pound white sugar, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons juice from 1 to 2 lemons
- 1/2 teaspoon butter
Place a small plate in the freezer so you can test the jam for proper thickness later. Sterilize jars and lids. In a food processor, pulse the peaches until they are chopped well, about five or six 1-second pulses. If you prefer a coarser jam, feel free to chop the fruit to a chunkier texture.
Pour the fruit into a deep, heavy-bottomed pot. Toss with champagne and 1/4 cup of white sugar. Cover and allow to sit for 1 hour.
Add remaining sugar, salt, lemon juice, and butter. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the fruit begins to bubble and spit. Use a skimmer to skim off any foam that forms. Cook for about 20-25 minutes, stirring frequently to keep the fruit from sticking to the bottom of the pot.
Begin testing the jam for doneness. Spread 1/2 teaspoon of cooked fruit on the cold plate and place it back in the freezer. Wait 30 seconds, then run your finger through the fruit. It should be thick enough to maintain a path when you run your finger through it. If you’d like thicker jam, place the plate back in the freezer and cook the fruit for another 4 minutes and test again. Repeat until desired thickness is achieved, but be careful about cooking too long or you will alter the taste of your jam.
Remove pot from heat and use a spoon to skim any foam from the surface of the fruit. Ladle jam into sterilized jars, leaving 1/2-inch of headroom, and process them in a hot water bath for 10 minutes. Unopened jars will keep at room temperature for up to 6 months. Opened jam should be refrigerated.