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2 stems dried lavender flowers (about 1 teaspoon florets)
4 1/2 cups water
2 cups sugar
5 1/2–6 pounds white peaches
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice, or 1/2 teaspoon citric acid

1. Wrap the lavender in a cheesecloth pouch and put it in a pot with the water and sugar. Bring the syrup to a boil, then remove from the heat and cover until needed.

2. Slash an “X” in the pointed end of each peach. Working in batches, blanch them in boiling water for 60 to 90 seconds, until the skin loosens. Lift them out with a slotted spoon and drain. When they are cool, peel and pit the peaches. Cut them into halves or slices, as you like. Halves are prettier to serve; slices are easier to handle. Place the peaches as you slice them in a quart of water acidified with the lemon juice or citric acid.

3. Remove the lavender from the syrup, squeeze it to extract its flavor, and discard. Bring the syrup to a boil. Pack the peaches into four prepared quart jars or eight prepared pint jars. When a jar is about one-third full, cover with some hot syrup and shake to settle the peaches. Repeat until full, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Run a skewer or other thin implement around the inside edge of the jar to release any air pockets and top up with syrup if necessary. Seal the jars, and process in a boiling-water bath for 25 minutes for pint jars, 30 minutes for quarts. To reduce venting, turn off the heat and let the jars rest in the water for 5 minutes before removing.

Yields 4 quarts.

David Kent grew up eating preserved produce in Eastern Tennessee. He’s the author of “Saving the Season” [Knopf, 2013] and writes a blog by the same name.