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I have a bunch of fresh very-ripe peaches off of Ron's dad's tree (10 lbs or more!!!!). I want to make pies today, but don't know whether I should cook the peaches before filling the pies or if I should just put the fresh peaches inside the crusts so we can freeze them and cook at a later date. I won't be cooking the crusts in any way - just wanted to know if anyone has experience freezing fresh peach filling vs. cooked peach filling. Or maybe it doesn't matter. These pies I'll be making today will all be going into the freezer.



When I make a fresh peach pie I don't do any cooking of the peaches before I bake the pie.



Hopefully I didn't confuse anyone. Any help would be great!



Karen
Karen,



My experience with freezing fresh peaches is that after they are thawed out, I have the best peach mush in the world. Good for making peach ice cream though!



Dave
ddennis,



Exactly! That's why I'm a little hesitant to freeze the fresh peaches and try cooking the filling before I freeze the entire pie. I haven't tried it that way, but didn't know whether it would make a difference. I buy frozen peach pies for the winter but I'm just not sure if the frozen ones I buy have pre-cooked fillings or fresh. Dang!!



Karen
I tried to make the pies this morning and the peaches were so ripe that they just practically fell apart in my hands when I tried to peel them and cut them up. It was terrible. On top of it I cut my finger badly this morning while trying to cut the fruits up. Ron fixed my finger and told me to go out and BUY a pie so that's what I ended up doing.



I did find out from a friend that in order to make a fresh peach pie one should add some lemon juice to the fruits before freezing to stop the discoloration (as well as the other ingredients, sugar, butter, nutmeg or cinnamon) and that it's OK to freeze the fresh fruit inside the pie crust. The most important part was to use "non-ripe, firm fruits" which was something I didn't have. All the fruits I had were way too ripe.



Karen
Mmmmmm fresh peaches... I sure miss 'em. My grandma made a great peach cobbler from the tree in her yard. Funny how thinking of food can take you back.



Grandma used to can a lot of them too. I think she used them in her cobblers, which are more suited to mushy peaches than a pie.
[quote name='Karen Hood' post='85992' date='Sep 9 2006, 08:33 PM']I tried to make the pies this morning and the peaches were so ripe that they just practically fell apart in my hands when I tried to peel them and cut them up. It was terrible. On top of it I cut my finger badly this morning while trying to cut the fruits up. Ron fixed my finger and told me to go out and BUY a pie so that's what I ended up doing.



I did find out from a friend that in order to make a fresh peach pie one should add some lemon juice to the fruits before freezing to stop the discoloration (as well as the other ingredients, sugar, butter, nutmeg or cinnamon) and that it's OK to freeze the fresh fruit inside the pie crust. The most important part was to use "non-ripe, firm fruits" which was something I didn't have. All the fruits I had were way too ripe.



Karen[/quote]



Hi Karen. A non-ripe peach isn't going to ripen in the freezer so you won't get that wonderful peach flavor. Use ripe but firm fruit and process it right away. Cover the uncooked fruit in the shell with lemon juice or citric acid powder and maybe a little syrup made from juice (apple or white grape are good) to prevent browning and freezer burn. You're a saint for making homemade pies! I don't like to cook much anymore and would order everything prepared, cooked and delivered if I could get away with it.... I'd like someone to eat it for me too. <img src='http://www.hoodswoods.net/IVB/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/wink3.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt=':wink3:' />

Another Karen
we just got done doing 4 bushels of peachs. Eesh my poor hands. All we do for a quick freeze is blanch the peaches enough to peel the skins off, Cut them into bite size pieces. Then we add some fruit-fresh, sugar, to get the juices going, them mix everything up and put them into freezer bags. We have found over the years that some gratted orange peel and just a bit of juice, and some cinnamon really adds some zip to them. we have a recipe for canned spiced peaches but with my mom's bad shoulder the work was too hard for her, so we take the short cut. I don't know about freezing pies but our local pie store Sara Lee does it all the time and they seem to come out ok.



Those are just my two cents.



-Lisa
I thought there were "Cooking" peaches and "Desert" peaches Same as Apples.



At the Home I recently sold I had 6 different kinds of peaches, ripened at differing times so that I had

Fresh peaches or necterines most of the summer .



Some of the peaches and both of my Necterines were firm to hard when first ripe.



There are also "Free Stone" where the pit comes out easy, and the others I do not remember the name of that are a lot more work to work with.



I like to leave the skin on for pies adds Texture, some folks do not like this, to bad for them.



More pie for me <img src='http://www.hoodswoods.net/IVB/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt='Smile' />



Ripe soft peaches get pitted and put in the VitaMix with the skins on with about one fresh Lemon's worth of juice per half gallon of peach mush.



Pour this into a gallon size Ziplock bag and freeze flat in the freezer.



Use these to make Jam in the winter when you want to heat the house up anyway.



I have had as many as thirty Bags of Peach/Apricot/Plum/Necterine/black berry/strawberry mush in the freezer at a time.



You can also break off chunks to make great Fruit Smoothies, add a little ice cream, Yum,Yum.



Sorry about your finger.
Karen -



My grandma never froze peaches/apricots/apples etc... Always canned. Made lots of pies later in the year. There must have been a reason, unless it was just that old habits die hard.



In the book Putting Food By the author reccomends a steam blanch, peeling, pitting and wet packing before freezing. She claims that Peaches freeze well and adds a teaspoon of Vitamin C to the water bath beforehand.



Good Luck.... please quit cutting yourself, Jessie needs his mom in one piece!
Excellent ideas. Now I know what to do next year. Ron's dad's peach tree is completely empty now. All the fruits were either picked off or fell off on their own. It's amazing how quickly the weather has changed around here. Literally one day was summer and the next (last week) it was Fall (in the 60's). It's jacket weather today. Last week we were all wearing shorts and tank tops.



We now have 3 apple trees and a huge crabapple tree on our property here. They are all FULL and the apples are almost ready to use. Almost time for more pies....



Does anyone have any ideas on what to do with the crabapples? We have a ton of them. They're so darn tart and I dont' know what to do with them at all.



Karen
I wonder if you could use them the same what you'd use rhubarb which is also really tart. I just harvested my rhubarb plant and can't wait for the strawberry rhubarb pies that will result.
Karen...make some crabapple jelly/jam...my mom used to make it when I was kid...it's really not bad at all!
This is a recipe for spiced crab apples I saved but didn't live in apple country long enough to try so I can't vouch for it. Besides, it involves canning, a process that somehow always found its way to the bottom of my priority list. <img src='http://www.hoodswoods.net/IVB/public/style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/smile.gif' class='bbc_emoticon' alt='Smile' />



5 lbs crab apples

4-1/2 cups apple vinegar (5% acidity)

3-3/4 cups water

7-1/2 cups sugar

4 tsp. whole cloves

4 sticks cinnamon

Six 1/2-inch cubes of fresh ginger root



YIELD: About 9 pints



PROCEDURE: Remove blossom petals and wash apples, but

leave stems attached. Puncture the skin of each apple four

times with an ice pick or toothpick. Mix vinegar, water

and sugar and bring to a boil. Add spices tied in a spice

bag or cheesecloth. Using a blancher basket or sieve,

immerse 1/3 of the apples at a time in the boiling vinegar/

syrup solution for 2 minutes. Place cooked apples and spice

bag in a clean 1- or 2- gallon crock and add hot syrup.

Cover and let stand overnight. Remove spice bag, drain

syrup into a large saucepan and reheat to boiling. Fill

pint jars with apples and hot syrup, leaving 1/2-inch

headspace. Adjust lids and process.
[quote name='Karen Hood' post='86732' date='Sep 15 2006, 10:01 AM']Does anyone have any ideas on what to do with the crabapples? We have a ton of them. They're so darn tart and I dont' know what to do with them at all.[/quote]



It depends on if you like tart. I do. You can use them to add some zing to home-canned applesauce by using a ratio (to taste) of regular apples and crab apples.



I like applesauce and it is a great way to deal with a surplus of apples. You can freeze it also if you don't want to can it.
A great thing to do with very ripe, squishy peaches is to make "Peach butter". Pretty much the same process as pumpkin and apple butter. Mmmmmmm. I have a recipe somewhere. I can try to find it if anyone is interested.



You need to add either lemon or a dissolved vitamin C tablet to keep frozen peaches from turning brown when you thaw them. Nothing keeps them from turning to much though.