Thursday, August 12, 2010

Peaches: seasonal and full of flavor. Right now!

Ripe peaches are a delicious summer treat. FoodPair is happy to report that they're peaking in freshness and flavor right now! Whether you're a big fan of peaches or obsessed with them like Kramer and Newman on Seinfeld (check out "The Doodle", episode 106), there's no better time to bring home a handful, bag, or entire crate of peaches. Native to China, peaches were brought on the Silk Route to Persia and then to Europe when Alexander the Great conquered Persia. They were introduced to the Americas by Spanish explorers in the 16th Century.

What's great is that peaches are one of the easiest fruits to pick well. Look for ones that are firm, but yield slightly to pressure. Avoid any peaches with green marks on the skin and any that have been bruised. Bruises are easy to spot because the fruit surrounding the mark will be loose and the skin may be broken.

Peaches should be stored at room temperature and do not need to be refrigerated-- cold can lessen the taste. Plus, peaches don't ripen after being picked from the tree, so go ahead and eat them as soon as possible. Make sure to grab a napkin or two or you'll be swimming in ripe peach juice!

We at FoodPair are huge fans summer peaches. The next time you pick up peaches at the market, be sure to try one of these simple, yet delicious recipes:

Nectarine and Peach Cobbler
Ingredients in this recipe: butter, lemon juice, peaches, sugar, nectarines, salt, all purpose flour, baking powder, milk

Peaches with Mascarpone
Ingredients in this recipe: mint, cream, strawberry, peaches, walnuts, mascarpone

Peach-Mango Popsicles
Ingredients in this recipe: sugar, water, lime juice, pureed mango, pureed peaches

Peach Crepes with Almond Praline
Ingredients in this recipe: almonds, cream, peaches, sugar, powdered sugar, cream cheese, amaretto, crepe pancakes

Arugula Salad with Peaches and Blue Cheese
Ingredients in this recipe: prosciutto, arugula, olive oil, lemon juice, peaches, blue cheese, salt, black pepper
Let us know if you have any peach-related tips or favorite recipes in the comments section.


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