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Monday, May 31, 2010

Things to do with peaches (and other in-season fruit...)

Harvest. Something I love. And something is always in harvest. Right now, in AZ its peaches at the peach picking farm about 45 minutes away. We go and pick peaches then come home and make wonderful things!

The strange (but awesome) thing about fruit is that when it is at its best, it is at its cheapest! How often are things that are the best the most affordable? It doesn’t usually work that way…but with fruit it does. Call it good old market economy and supply and demand (gotta love that!).

So when the local season's fruit is on sale—buy-buy-buy! You would be so surprised at the two jars of jam you can get from a 49-cent per pound, pound of fruit. And think about it, those jars of jam would have cost at least $2.99 or more each! So there is a cost savings! Plus its fresh, and you made it.
So each year I make peach things, (in July we get cherries, and I make cherry jam for the year!).
Here is what I do with the peaches:

  • Dry them and use it in homemade trail mix or a mix in for my oatmeal.
    Dried, they are sweeter and last forever. Added to hot oatmeal, they re-hydrate, just like those little weird fake peach thingies in the store-bought instant oatmeal packs—only better. To dry: remove pit and slice thin, lay on parchment paper on cookie sheets and place in your low oven (150-170 degrees) and dry for several hours. Check them every hour. Or just dry them in your food dehydrator.
  • Puree the peaches
    I remove the pits, then skin and all goes into a blender. This puree then gets packed into Ziplocs and goes in the freezer. Place 1 cup in each bag, then when you want to make a smoothie—pull it out of the freezer, peel away the bag and it goes into the blender with yogurt and a banana and you have a luscious peach smoothie.
  • Canned peachesRemove the pit, then half them or slice them. Pack them into large glass jars. Then make your syrup. 2 cups hot tap water and 1 cup sugar. Stir to dissolve. Add 1 tbs white vinegar, then pour syrup over peaches in the can. Lid, let cool then place in your fridge. They keep for a long time. Use the peachy syrup later drizzled over ice cream, pancakes or in your tea.
  • SorbetIn a blender, add 5-7 pitted, chopped peaches, 1 cup sugar and 1.5 cups warm water. Puree. Place this in your ice cream freezer. Sorbet!
  • JamSee my recipe for farmstyle jam.

Back in the day, when harvests were once a year, this is how people enjoyed things more than just those 6 weeks of the year! You can do this will all fruit that is on sale during its peak.

1 comment:

  1. We went there Saturday. The girls had a blast picking peaches. This week, I will be busy making pies, cobbler, jam and freezing the leftovers. :-)