Peach

Peaches are the star fruit in the summer and their characteristics make them versatile in the kitchen.

Refreshing as a fruit, on their own or fruit salads, savory as garnish for meat or fish dishes, sweet as main ingredient in cakes, pies, and ice creams. Serve a dish with peaches today and your success is assured, it will certainly delight the whole family.

Summer peaches, sun kissed velvet

There are many varieties of peach, none comparable to the red-orange velvet skin and yellow flesh produced in the summer with an incomparable taste. These peaches get to the market from late June to early October. Buy tree ripened fruit that feels slightly soft when pressing and with deep yellow or cream flesh, never green.

Uses in cooking

Peaches are delicious as they are. To remove the skin should you find it unpleasant to eat, peel them -rubbing the skin with the blunt edge of a knife will make the task easier to carry out- or blanch them, running cold water immediately – as you would with tomatoes - and the skin will almost come out on its own.

There are plenty of traditional recipes for cakes, pies, ice cream, jams and jellies. Modern cuisine has added other where peaches star as garnish to veal, pork, poultry or salads, adding a sweet contrast to the flavor.

How to cook peaches

Peaches also make great desserts cooked in a simple way and served with cream, custard, ice cream and candied fruits or nuts.

Cooked in syrup: Blanch, remove skin, halve, and remove the pit. Put1/2 cup sugar (100 g) and 2 cups (500 ml) water into a pan, bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the peach pieces and cook until tender. Add kirsch or brandy 5 minutes before removing from the heat for flavor. Exotic: use red wine or port instead of water.

Poached in their skins: Pierce the skin with a cocktail stick and place into a pan. Cover with water and add a little sugar, cook until tender. Remove and add more sugar to the liquid, and simmer to make light syrup. Pour over the peaches. Serve warm or cooled.

Grilled: Remove skin, halve, and rub melted butter, brown sugar and cinnamon. Grill or broil for five minutes and serve warm.

Baked: Remove skin. Insert a clove stick and place into a baking pan. Prepare a syrup with 2/3 cup water and 1/2 cup brown sugar and a little lemon peel. Pour over the peaches and bake.

The recipes

Roasted turkey breast with peaches and cava recipe

Roasts are easy, once everything is in the oven you have time for other things.

Ingredients

2-3 lb (1-1.2 kg) turkey breast
3-4 peaches, peeled and cut in wedges
11/2  cup (375 ml) cava
olive oil or butter for basting
salt
pepper

Procedure

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC).
  2. Sprinkle the turkey breast with salt and pepper –light hand on this last one- and rub olive oil or butter on the skin side.
  3. Lay it on a greased pan and place in the middle rack. Roast for 1/2 hour.
  4. Get the pan out of the oven –take advantage to do a little basting- and distribute the peach pieces around the turkey breast. Pour the cava around and cook for 1¼ to 11/2 hours more.
  5. Remove the turkey breast and let it stand covered in foil for 15-20 minutes. Carving will be much easier. Reserve the peach pieces as garnish. Reserve the pan drippings; they are a perfect accompanying sauce.
  6. Serve slices of turkey breast with cooked peaches around and cover with some of the sauce from the pan or serve the sauce on the side.

Cooking tip: If you like a caramelized flavor, add the peaches to the roasting pan and wait 1/2 hour before adding the cava. You’ll also get some extra sauce.

Roasted pork with peaches and prunes recipe

Ingredients

2-3 lb (1 kg) boned roasting joint of pork
2 peaches, peeled and sliced
3/4  cup (100 g) prunes, soaked in boiling water
2 Tbs (50 g) sugar
1 cup (250 ml) water
2 Tbs brown sugar
1 tsp ground mustard
1 Tbs vinegar
salt
pepper

Procedure

  1. Preheat the oven to moderate 350ºF (180ºC).
  2. Sprinkle salt and pepper and rub olive oil if the joint is very lean. Place on a roasting pan. Roast for 1 hour.
  3. Simmer water and sugar for 5 minutes. Add the sliced peaches and cook for 20 minutes more. Reserve the syrupy cooking liquid.
  4. To make a sauce, put 6 Tbs or the cooking liquid in a pan, add mustard, vinegar and brown sugar, simmer for 5 minutes.
  5. Brush the meat with this sauce before carving.
  6. Serve slices of meat garnished with peach and prunes and pour a little more sauce –if any left- on top.

Roasted pork with peaches cooking tip

If you don’t have them, substitute fresh peaches with canned ones in syrup and use the liquid to prepare the sauce.

Quick peach tart recipe

Ingredients

1 pie shell
3-4 medium peaches
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup whipping cream
¼ cup confectioner’s sugar
3-4 drops vanilla essence

Procedure

  1. Blanch peaches 30 seconds in boiling water, cool quickly under running water, remove skin, halve and remove pit.
  2. Heat up the sugar and 3/4 cup water in a pan; simmer for 3 minutes, add peach halves to the syrup and cook for 10 minutes or until tender. Set aside and let it cool down.
  3. Whip the cream, add the confectioner’s sugar and vanilla essence once set. Stir briskly to blend in.
  4. Cover the bottom of the pie shell with a thin layer of whipped cream. Place peach halves, hollow end down, on top and fill the holes with more cream.

Peach pie cooking tips

  • You could thick use custard or any other creamy filling of your choice, top with the peaches and finish with the whipped cream.
  • If you don’t have fresh peaches, substitute with canned ones.

Peaches and raspberries with strawberry sauce recipe

Being on a weight loss diet does not mean you have to forgo dessert. Try this balanced sweet option, full of vitamins and antioxidant power.

Ingredients

3 large peaches
2 Tbs sugar
lemon peel
11/2  cup hulled fresh strawberries
11/2 cup fresh raspberries
3 Tbs strawberry jam
1/2  tsp cinnamon

Procedure

  1. Blanch peaches 30 seconds in boiling water, cool quickly under running water, remove skin, halve and remove pit.
  2. Heat up the sugar, lemon peel, and 3/4  cup water in a pan; simmer for 3 minutes, add peach halves to the syrup and cook for 5 minutes. Let cool down in the pan.
  3. Combine strawberries and jam a blender and purée. Strain to remove seeds and stir in cinnamon. Cover and chill.
  4. Drain and place 1 peach half, hollow side up, on 4 dessert plates. Spoon 3 Tbs of the sauce over each peach half. Top with ¼ cup raspberries. Serve.

Peaches and raspberries with strawberry sauce cooking tips

  • If you don’t have them, substitute fresh peaches with canned ones in syrup.
  • Add 1 tsp lemon or orange juice to the strawberry sauce to prevent discoloration if you are going to chill for longer than 2 hours.

Poached peaches with yogurt recipe

This is an ideal dessert for a weight loss diet, as long as you use fat free yogurt.

Ingredients

3 large peaches
2 Tbs sugar
lemon peel
3 cups yogurt
fresh mint leaves for garnish

Procedure

  1. Blanch peaches 30 seconds in boiling water, cool quickly under running water, remove skin, and cut into wedges.
  2. Heat up the sugar, lemon peel, and 3/4  cup water in a pan; simmer for 3 minutes, add peach halves to the syrup and cook for 5 minutes. Let cool down in the pan.
  3. Distribute 2/3 of the peach pieces into 6 glass-stemmed goblets; spoon ¼ cup yogurt on top. Add the rest of the peach, reserving 6 wedges, and spoon other ¼ cup yogurt on top.
  4. Decorate with the reserved peach wedges and fresh mint leaves. Serve.

Poached peaches cooking tips

  • If you don’t have them, substitute fresh peaches with canned ones in syrup.
  • Use different flavored yogurts. Lemon flavor goes well with peach, try also vanilla or caramel.
  • Use cottage or farmers cheese instead of yogurt. Decorate with brown sugar and cinnamon.
  • If you are not trying to lose weight, you can substitute yogurt with custard, cream or ice cream.
One peach over black background.

Peach