Every year in mid July the nectarines on our white nectarine tree become ripe, all at once, and we harvest them all within the space of a week. White nectarines and white peaches grown at home are so delicate that they must be eaten within a day of picking, preferably within hours of picking, or they will bruise and spoil. They also don’t cook up well, because their flavor is so delicate and sweet; you need some tartness for a good cooking fruit. So instead, we make up a simple sauce comprised of slices of the fresh fruit, some ascorbic acid to keep the fruit from turning brown, and a little sugar to help the fruit macerate and release some of its juices. For ascorbic acid (also known as Vitamin C) we usually use a handy product called Fruit-Fresh, but you can use lemon juice or ground up Vitamin C. We use canning jars for convenience, but note that there isn’t a vacuum seal as the fruit has not been heated. Instead it is stored in the freezer.
Mom’s Nectarines Recipe
- 1 quart of freshly sliced nectarines or peaches
- 1/2 cup to 1 cup of sugar, depending on how sweet the fruit is
- 1 Tablespoon of Fruit-Fresh Produce Protector or a tablespoon of ground up vitamin C (ascorbic acid), or 1 or 2 Tbsp of fresh squeezed lemon juice
Toss sugar and Fruit-Fresh (or Vit C or lemon juice) together in with the fruit. Let sit for 15 minutes to allow juice to form. Pack into containers. Refrigerate for immediate use, or freeze.
Delicious served over vanilla ice-cream or alone. Lasts up to a year in a cold freezer.