July 30, 2016

We Southern Sisters are giving a hearty welcome to peach season.  It makes us happy. Whether you slice, cook, layer or preserve them, peaches make life in the South worth living.  We may be overstating it a bit but we don't think so.  From mid May to late August, you can treat yourself to basketfuls of fresh peaches from your local farmer's market or fruit stand.  Check out some fresh, sparkly, and spicy ways to whip up delectably peachy creations.  And don't think we forgot the ol' fashioned peach cobbler.  Good southern women (and we like to think we are) would never forget something so important!

 

Peach-Pepper Preserves  (our quick microwave version is a welcome time saver)

4 1/2 cups peeled and diced fresh peaches

1 jalapeno pepper, minced

1/2 red bell pepper, finely chopped

1 1/2 cups sugar

3 T. lime juice

1 (1.75 oz) pkg. powdered fruit pectin

Combine all ingredients in a large, microwave-save bowl.  Microwave on HIGH for 8 minutes.  Stir well.  Microwave an additional 10 minutes.  Allow the mixture to cool completely.  The preserves will thicken as they cool.  They will be the consistency of soft-set preserves.  Serve immediately or store in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 3 weeks.  Makes about 3 cups

 

Carolina Peach Sangria

1 (750 mill.) bottle rose wine

3/4 cup vodka

1/2 cup peach nectar

6 T. thawed frozen lemonade concentrate

2 T. sugar

1 pound fresh peaches, peeled and sliced

1 (6 oz) pkg. fresh raspberries (strawberries are nice too)

2 cups chilled club soda

Combine wine, vodka, peach nectar, lemonade concentrate, and sugar in a pitcher.  Sit in the peaches and raspberries.  Cover and chill for 8 hours.  Just before serving, stir in the club soda.  Makes about 8 servings

 

Meeting Street Peach Cobbler

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter

1 cup all-purpose flour

2 cups sugar, divided in half

1 T. baking powder

1/4 t. salt

1 cup milk

4 cups fresh peaches, peeled and sliced (if peaches are not in season, use canned)

1 T. lemon juice

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Place the butter in a 13x9-inch baking dish and melt in the oven.  Set aside.  In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, 1 cup sugar, baking powder and salt.  Add the milk and stir just until the dry ingredients are incorporated.  Pour the batter over the melted butter but do not combine.

In a saucepan, combine 1 cup sugar, peaches and lemon juice.  Stirring continuously, bring to a boil over medium-high heat.  Pour the peach mixture evenly over the batter in the baking pan.  Do not combine.  Bake for 45 minutes until golden and bubbly.  Serve warm.  May be topped with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream if desired.   Makes 8 servings.

 

Fresh Peach Salsa  (fabulous served on roasted chicken or pork, pan seared fish, with assorted cheeses, or spooned over Greek yogurt)

1 large onion, chopped

1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced

1/4 cup sugar

2 T. grated fresh ginger

2 T. olive oil

6 fresh peaches, peeled and chopped

1/4 cup lemon juice

1/4 t. salt

2 T. chopped fresh cilantro

In a skillet, saute the onion, jalapeno, ginger and sugar in the oil for 5 minutes.  Stir in the peaches and remaining ingredients, and cook, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes.    Serve warm or at room temperature.  Can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container up to a week.  Makes about 4 cups

 

 



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