Fermented Cinnamon Peach Recipe: Spicy, Easy, and Delicious! (How to Ferment Peaches or Other Fruits with this Recipe)
Wondering if or how you can ferment fruits? In this tutorial, I‘m sharing my fruit fermentation experiment with peaches and a spicy peach lacto-fermentation recipe for a delicious chutney (a fabulous, easy side dish), plus how to ferment fruits in general.
My parents came to visit last weekend, and they brought us a huge box of fresh peaches from their orchard! SO juicy! They were already starting to turn a bit---as in being quite ripe---so I had to act quickly. I was just not in the mood for canning jam, so I decided to try fermenting the peaches as an alternative, fast preservation method (that’s also incredibly healthy as it contains probiotics).
I looked for a few recipes---and wouldn't you know, there is just not a whole lot of information about fermenting peaches or any fruit that I could find. So, I generally took my guidance for this recipe from random books, magazines, and sources to inspire the recipe I will tell you about now.
After tasting the results of this fermenting experiment, I have NO idea why I have not tried fermenting peaches (or other fruits for that matter) before now. I can't believe how delicious these turned out! Easy, delicious, and practically FREE! Plus, the probiotics from the fermentation process have incredible health benefits.
NOTE: This recipe is for a lacto-fermentation chutney or sauce….If you want to find out how to use your peaches in other types of fermentation, such as in a raw fruit vinegar or perhaps a fizzy kombucha, click those links to find out more!
FTC Disclosure: There are affiliate links scattered throughout this article. If you click through and make any kind of purchase, I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.
How to Make Fermented Spiced Peach Sauce (also called a Fruit Chutney)
**8 cups of peaches, skinned and cut into pieces (That's how much I decided to use---Use as much or as little as you want and adjust. I am not a big "measurer" so feel free to play around with amounts!
**1 1/2 cups of pecans, chopped (You don't need to use this much---I love nuts)
**Sugar---Most everything I have read about fermenting fruits and drinks (like kombucha, kefir, etc.) mentions adding sugar of some type. That's because the culture (specific bacteria/yeast) uses the sugar as food. Frankly, I felt these peaches were quite sweet enough, and since I don't like added sugar unless absolutely necessary, I decided to completely omit the sugar. However, using sugar will help with the fermentation process.
**1 1/2 tbsp Cinnamon (I probably added too much, so unless you REALLY love Cinnamon, cut back some. The fermenting process makes the spice tastes come out more strongly.)
**1 1/2 tbsp Vanilla Extract, more or less
**5 Allspice pods (optional)
**1 tbsp Nutmeg (also optional, but don't you love nutmeg and cinnamon in the Fall?)
**A Pinch of Cardamom---just a tiny pinch because Cardamom is very strong
**1 tsp Clove powder
**1/2 cup of Lemon Juice
**A fermentation starter of some type. Some people say you don't need it to ferment fruits and vegetables. I'll be honest---I almost ALWAYS use a starter culture because I feel it protects the food from molds, plus it speeds up the fermentation process. I decided to experiment with TWO different types this time:
Starter Option 1) Water Kefir---Water Kefir is essentially fermented sugar water. It's super good for you, and I thought I'd give it a try here. Here's where you can buy Water Kefir Grains.
Starter Option 2) Whey---See my article here to learn how to make Amazing Whey. I usually use Whey in all my ferments. I'll let you know the results of both later in the article.
You'll need about 3/4 cups of either starter.
**Mason Jars---I used quart size. This amount of peaches ended up filling 2 quart size jars and 1 pint size jar.
**A Pounding Tool
NOTE: I used to go to the grocery store and buy the spices in the spice aisle....that is, until I learned how old and poor quality they are. The links above are for Amazon for your convenience, but I now purchase the majority of my spices from this quality online store.
After I get them, I simply store in Mason Jars with an oxygen absorber. You get a lot more spice for a much much cheaper price and at a MUCH higher quality too.
Directions for Making Your Fermented Spiced Peaches:
First, mix the peach pieces with the spices and nuts.
Then, pound the mixture to release the juices. The more the juices release, the less water you may have to add, if any. I try to add as little water to my ferments as possible.
After this, I poured the mixture into Mason jars, leaving about two inches at the top to accommodate the lemon juice and the starter (kefir or whey). You could actually mix the lemon juice and the starter in with the pounded mixture too, then pour into Mason Jars. Either way is just fine.
Cover your Mason Jar with some type of airlock (see the green nipples) or a regular lid. If you use the nipples or other airlock, you won't have to "burp" your ferment. If you use a regular lid, you will have to "burp" your ferment by gently loosening the lid just a bit (you'll hear/feel the release of gas), then tightening that lid right back up.
Now, you just wait.
Based on what I have read in various fermenting books about using fruit, they tend to ferment very quickly because of the sugars. Most sources I found say to leave fruit ferments only two days, then refrigerate. However, I left mine for four days. I like stronger ferments, number one. And number two, I love to see the bubbles really working it.
If you are worried about the fermentation process, go with two days. And you can always tell if your ferment is “good” by the smell. If you see mold, I recommend composting it.
When you like how your ferment tastes, just bottle them up, refrigerate, and enjoy over a period of weeks. I have read that fruit ferments can last up to a month, but most of the literature I have read indicates to use them within a week. Frankly, I feel fermenting preserves the food quite well, so I will be leaning more toward the month. But you can tell if it's not good.
Use your instincts! When in doubt, throw it out!
The Difference Between Using Water Kefir and Whey as a Starter Culture
I am so very glad I did this experiment.
What I found out is that water kefir is an excellent starter--at least for fruit like this. I'll be trying it on vegetables too, and I'll let you know how that goes. The water kefir ferment resulted in a slightly tangier ferment, which is very good. The whey did a great job as always!
A note about Water Kefir: Water Kefir is just one type of fermented drink and a nice additional way to add those probiotics to your system. I've been using it and experimenting with second ferments for several months, now. I'll have an article or two about kefir coming up shortly!
Final Thoughts on Making Fermented Peaches as a Sauce or Chutney
If you have lots of peaches this harvest season, and you are just plain tired of canning or dehydrating, why not try making a fermented experiment? You just may love it, and it will be a healthy addition to your food preservation skills.
Just a bit of fore-warning—-
This chutney is not super sweet, and is, in fact, a bit salty-tangy. This combination makes it delicious in marinades, as a topping or side for meat dishes, and in salads.
I hope you enjoy it!
You might also enjoy these similar articles (and there's lots more on the blog!)
Hugs, Health, & Self-Reliance!
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