Material Handling: Preserving Summer

Category: Pastry & Baking

This issue, we’re looking at ways to deliver our guests summer fruits ripe for the season. Often canning is thought of as a labor intensive way to preserve fruits for use months ahead of time. But summer desserts can benefit from ‘quick pickle’ and ‘cold jam’ techniques which keep the integrity of the ingredient intact, direct to the guest.

But first our gourmet market report. We’ve been inspired by creative preserves on specialty grocery shelves across the country. Beyond being a spread for toast, we are enjoying preserves as a spike in sodas and cocktails. Suan Grant from Oklahoma City jars preserves featuring scotch bonnet peppers combined with an array of fruits and spices. Try her Scotch Bonnet Mango Lemon fruit butter and Scotch Bonnet with Pineapple and Cinnamon. Check out all their offerings on their website:

Gourmet market preserves from Suan’s and Fischer & Wiser
Gourmet market preserves from Susan’s and Fischer & Wiser. Photo by A. Tahlier

Fischer & Wieser have been making farm-to-table preserves for years. They are located in Fredericksburg, Texas, an area famous for its peach harvest. We loved the sweet and textured Amaretto Peach Pecan. For more info on their line of preserves, pie fillings and more visit:

Although we are canning summer fruits in glass jars for winter use, it makes sense to work summer ingredients in a way that we can use them immediately. We’ve been purchasing organic stone fruits and berries and turning them into ‘Cold Jams’, also known as ‘Freezer Jams’.

Cold Jams
Organic Blueberry and Golden Apricot cold jams are a simple way to preserve fruits in season and deliver them with their flavor intact. Click image above or links below for recipe.
Quick Pickle Peach
Pastry Chef Kyle McKinney’s dessert features quick-pickled peaches from the menu at Barley Swine in Austin Texas. Photo by JMPurePastry. Click image above or links below for recipe.

The cold jam technique requires little or no cooking of the fruit, takes little time and gives the chef control of the sweetness and flavor profile. Cold jams have a softer set and fresh fruit taste that can be used as a sauce, compote, on top of gelato or for finishing tarts and other pastry items. See our recipes for Golden Apricot and Blueberry Cold Jam, which can last chilled 2 to 3 weeks or stored several months in the freezer.

Crave pickle with your pastry? Pastry Chef Kyle McKinney from Barley Swine in Austin,Texas likes to use fresh, locally sourced, and seasonal ingredients to create desserts that entice nostalgia with a modern spark. We’d recommend his delicious and creative Peach Semi-freddo dessert. This sweet has many elements: shaved peaches, Thai basil and lemon sauces, sesame meringue and oat crumbles, to name a few. Cutting through it all is a lovely ‘Quick Pickle’ peach that is at the same time sweet, acidic and spicy. Chef McKinney prepares a fresh batch daily so the peaches retain their texture and flavor. He was generous enough to share his recipe with us here.

Quick Pickle and Cold Jam methods are great ways to deliver the best taste of summer fruits, enhanced with spices, sugars and creative ingredient combinations. We recommend pickling the fruits in halves or large pieces and trimming them for desserts as needed. For the cold jams try combining two or more fruits to create interesting new combinations.

Jimmy & Julie MacMillan of JMPurePastry
Jimmy & Julie MacMillan of JMPurePastry. Photo by Anthony Tahlier.

Any trends or inspirations you’d like to see in the Material Handling spotlight? Email Jimmy and Julie at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Join us in October for an examination of popcorn, caramel corn, and all its variations.


JMPurePastry is a Chicago-based pastry solutions group specializing in high quality, well designed products for the restaurant, baking and hospitality industry. The group is also responsible for the Emmy- Award winning Chicago Restaurant Pastry Competition video series. For more information, visit


Find JMPurePastry's Cold Jams and Quick Pickled Peach recipes in the Recipe section or click the links below.