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Just Peachy!

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Summertime and gorgeous fruit is plentiful. Bright colors and a garden of aromatic scents fill markets and farm stands. It is easy to go crazy and over purchase when the produce looks so good.

A recent trip to a local farmer’s market found me carry home more peaches than I could ever eat, even with help from my husband. I couldn’t help it. They looked so good. Plump, rosy cheeked peaches are a weakness of mine.

After eating the juicy ripe beauties for breakfast, lunch and snacks, I had finally had enough. Now what do I do with all of these peaches?

I made a delicious coffee cake, sweet and spicy salsa and Peaches and Cream smoothies. If you are like my and temptation takes over here are some quick and easy recipes for gorgeous summer fruit.

Tips for purchasing summer fruit:

  1. For best flavor, price and quality, purchase fruit IN-SEASON. That means enjoying your favorites until they are no longer available and then finding a new favorite. Out of season fruit is expensive, not as good tasting and is a strain in the environment (schlepping out of season fruit around the country or world utilizes precious resources)
  2. Try to purchase organic or unsprayed produce. Pesticides and herbicides are not good for your family or the environment. Choose GREEN produce.
  3. Freeze or can your favorite produce to enjoy later in the year.

 Blueberry-Peach Crumb Cake

2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 cup butter
1 cup sour cream
1 egg
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon kosher salt
1 cup cut up skin-on ripe peaches
1 cup fresh blueberries
Powdered sugar for dusting

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter and flour an 8 or 9 inch square cake pan
1. In the bowl of a mixer with a paddle attachment combine the flour, sugar, brown sugar and butter on a low speed until blended and mixture starts to form clumps. Reserve 1 cup of the crumb topping for later to top off the cake.

2. Whisk together the sour cream, egg, vanilla, baking powder and baking soda until blended. Add this to the remaining flour mixture and mix until smooth. Spread it into the prepared cake pan. Sprinkle the peaches over the batter and then the reserved crumb topping over the fruit.

3. Bake for about 40 minutes until firm to the touch in the middle and toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and cut into squares to serve.

Peach and Jalapeno Salsa

Yields: 4 cups

3 cups fresh peaches, chopped
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 cups fresh tomatoes
1 large red pepper, diced
2 sweet onions, diced (I use Vidalia onions)
1 jalapeno, diced (optional)
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons honey
1/4 cup cilantro

  1. Combine all ingredients , except the cilantro in a large non-reactive saucepan
  2. Bring mixture to boil over medium heat. Cook for 3 minutes, stirring frequently.
  3. Reduce the heat to a simmer and continue cooking until the mixture is thick (about 20-30 minutes). Add the cilantro and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
  4. Store the Salsa, covered in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or freeze for 2 months.
  5. Serve the salsa with grilled vegetables or grilled chicken.

Peaches and Cream Smoothies

4 ripe peaches, peeled and pitted
1 cup raspberries
2 cups Greek style Yogurt
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 cups ice

  1. Process all of the ingredients in a blender. Serve.
Laura Frankel is an Executive Chef at Wolfgang Puck Kosher Catering and author of numerous kosher cookbooks including Jewish Cooking for All Seasons and Jewish Slow Cooker Recipes. To purchase her books, click here. For more articles by Laura, click here.
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