Now that spring has officially arrived, I have a strong craving for fresh fruits and vegetables. Of course, living in New Hampshire, freshly grown produce is still months away. Thankfully there are a number of ways to provide ourselves with foods that taste like summer, such as using the vegetables that we froze at the end of last summer. Another way to mimic the taste of summer is to utilize dried fruits.
Today’s recipe uses dried peaches to make a dessert that is delicious and fits perfectly in the palm of your hand. Courtesy of Big Mill Bed & Breakfast in Williamston, North Carolina, this treat is sure to please.
- 1 6-ounce package of dried peaches (Use dried fruit. In the south we used dried peaches, apples or cherries. Fresh fruit just doesn’t have the zing)
- 1-1/2 – 2 cups water (If water cooks out before peaches are soft, just add more water)
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1/2 cup shortening
- 1/2 cup milk
- Extra flour for dusting cutting board and rolling pin.
- 1/2 – 1 cup lard for frying (or Canola oil)
- Make filling the day before you cook jacks. Simmer peaches and water in a small saucepan for 45 minutes to an hour until peaches are soft.
- Be careful, they tend to stick. Add water if needed. Add the sugar and cook 15 minutes more, stirring often. Remove from heat and refrigerate overnight. You will have 2-1/2 cups peaches.
- Stir together the flour and salt. Using two forks, cut in the shortening. Add milk and stir. Separate into 8 to 10 portions.
- Using the extra flour and a rolling pin, roll each dough piece into a 6″ round. Roll dough as thin as you can without tearing dough.
- Put 1-2 tablespoons cooked peaches in the center of the rolled dough. Fold the edges over to make a half circle. Crimp edges with a fork. Trim off any extra dough.
- Melt lard in a medium-size frying pan. Grease should be quite hot before you fry jacks. Fry jacks until they are golden in color. Turn and brown the other side. Remove from heat and drain on paper towels. Continue until all jacks are cooked.
- The sweet, tangy taste of Peach Jacks is a treat. They are good cold but, oh, so good when they are hot. Yum!