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       Volume I - September 2, 2008

Simply Irresistible!
by Alice Osborne

When you get really, really good peaches in season, their fleshy, juicy sweetness is nearly impossible to resist. Luckily, it's now getting even easier to find different varieties such as yellow, white-fleshed, or saucer shaped. Wonderful alone, as preserves, or for making perfect summer desserts like peach pie or cobbler, peaches can also be used to accent savory meals.

Peaches will soften at room temperature, but their sweetness and flavor will never fully mature off the tree. To ripen, place them in a brown paper bag with an apple (the apple gives off a gas that ripens fruit). Close the bag and set aside for a day or two. Don’t forget to check the bag periodically — you’ll be amazed at how quickly the fruit will ripen.

Select ones without many bruises or marks that give to gentle pressure in the palm of your hand. Keep in mind that "melting" peaches become soft when baking and "non-melting" will keep their form. Ask your farmer or grocer which are best for whatever you're cooking - often it's a mix.

Try these recipes for a new take on summer’s ultimate treat:

Courtesy of Recipezaar

1/4 cup sugar
1 envelope unflavored gelatin
1 cup peach slices, frozen, thawed
8 ounces peach yogurt
2 egg whites
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup cream, whipping

In a small saucepan combine 1/4 c sugar and gelatin. Stir in 1/2 cup cold water.
Cook and stir over medium heat till sugar and gelatin are dissolved. Remove from heat.

In a blender container or food processor bowl place peach slices. Cover and blend or process ‘til peaches are nearly smooth. Stir peach puree into gelatin mixture. Gradually stir gelatin mixture into yogurt till combined.

Chill about 40 minutes or ‘til mixture is consistency of corn syrup, stirring occasionally. Remove from refrigerator. IN a small mixer bowl immediately beat egg whites till soft peaks form (tips curl over). Gradually add 2 T sugar, beating till stiff peaks form (tips stand straight). Whip cream till soft peaks form.

WHEN the gelatin mixture is partially set (consistency of unbeaten egg whites), fold in the beaten egg whites and whipped cream. Chill about 20 minutes or till mixture mounds when spooned.

Pile mixture into 8 dessert dishes and chill in the refrigerator 4 hours or till firm.

  Download this recipe.

Courtesy Recipezaar

2 medium peaches, sliced
2 bananas, sliced
lemon juice or pineapple juice
2 cups fresh pineapple, cubed
2-3 kiwi fruits, peeled and sliced
2 large strawberries, hulled and sliced
2 medium peaches, unpeeled with seed removed
1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons orange juice
2 tablespoons flaked coconut
1 1/2 teaspoons lime juice
1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated

Dip 2 peaches and bananas in pineapple or lemon juice. Arrange dipped peaches and other fruit on lettuce.

To make dressing, mix 2 unpeeled peaches, oil, orange juice, coconut, lime juice, and ginger in electric blender until smooth. Top fruit and lettuce with dressing. (Serves 20)

  Download this recipe.

Courtesy All Recipes

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1/3 cup milk
1 large ripe peach - peeled, pitted and diced
1 very ripe nectarine, pitted and diced
1 tablespoon brown sugar

Preheat oven to 400 °. Grease 8 muffin cups or line with paper muffin liners.
In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt and baking powder. Add vegetable oil, egg and milk; mix well. Fold in diced peach and nectarine. Fill each muffin tin to the top with muffin mix. Sprinkle a little brown sugar onto the top of each uncooked muffin. Bake in preheated oven for 18 to 20 minutes. Check muffins regularly after 15 minutes of baking. Serve warm or cool.

  Download this recipe.

Courtesy Dickey Farms

2 pounds peaches
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 1/4 cups flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 1/2 cups sour cream
13 tablespoons butter

Heat oven to 350°. Peel and halve peaches. Cook brown sugar in 5 tablespoons butter in 10 inch ovenproof frying pan until dissolved. Off the heat, arrange peach halves, cut sides up, in pan. Combine flour, baking soda, salt and spices. Beat 8 tablespoons butter with granulated sugar. Beat in egg and vanilla. Stir in flour mixture by thirds, alternating with sour cream. Spread over peaches and bake until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 50-55 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream. Oh my goodness!

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