Last year, we had an unexpected family gathering and, as one, does, I served a large dinner in celebration of a happy outcome; barbecued ribs with a new-ish sauce variation I was playing around with.
It was a hoooge hit, and so, a lot of folx ended up with jars of Holidaze BBQ Sauce for, well… the holidaze.
But then, I got to thinking of the warmer weather, and if peaches might could be just as good as pineapple in the new sauce?
And so, Peachy Keen Barbecue came about; but it was just a one-time, toss together recipe so, with summer finally upon us, I resolved to stock my pantry.
Note: I make and can my own barbecue sauce and pepper relish; but feel free to use jars from the market.
Stir all of the ingredients together in a large non-stick pot or, better yet, a multi setting slow cooker/sauté pot such as this one.
Simmer over medium low heat for several hours, stirring and whisking often to gather up any solids from the bottom of the pan.
Note: my old (18+ year old) large (6-1/2 quart) slow cooker worked a treat, because on the HIGH setting, it ran hotter than any other slow cooker I had owned. But then, it died on me. No worries, I replaced it with a 7 quart multi-cooker with a BROWN/SAUTÉ setting, which works a treat, because the HIGH slow cook setting is not as “high” as it was on the old pot.
So… if you have it, set your pot to BROWN/SAUTÉ at 250º and simmer for several hours, still stirring and whisking often to gather up any solids on the bottom or sides of the pot.
Note: you could run your canned peaches in light syrup through the blender before adding them to the sauce; but I chose to use my immersion blender after the sauce had simmered for four hours or so.
You will know your sauce is ready when it is slightly thickened and the color has darkened to a deep brownish red.
Give it a taste. Because my Barbecue Sauce and Pepper Relish are both a bit spicy and sweet, my Peachy Keen Sauce is as well. If you prefer your sauce less, ermmm, zippy, then choose a sauce base and pepper relish more suited to your tastes.
Ladle your sauce into prepared canning jars, seal, (remember to use just your fingertips to tighten the bands) and process in boiling water for 15 minutes.
Remove the jars to a rack to cool, listening for the little “POP!” that will tell you your jars have properly sealed.
You can also test the seal by pressing a fingertip into the center of each processed jar’s lid. If the center doesn’t move, it is sealed. If you push it down and it “POPS!” but the center stays down; it is sealed. If the center pops back up, you can either reprocess that jar for another 15 minutes, or stash the completely cooled jar in the fridge and use as you would any opened jar.
I ended up with seven 8 oz. jars, six 12 oz jars and three 16 oz jars.