Palisade Peaches – Why do I always buy so many?

A peach is a peach, or is it?A Palisade Peach is not just a peach. Ask anyone from Western Colorado or anyone who has ever tasted a fresh Palisade Peach and they will tell you tales of plump, juicy, colorful tree ripened peaches that you can not resist. I moved to Colorado 20 years ago, tasted my first Palisade Peach and quickly decided I had never tasted a peach so supreme. I always look forward to peach season and fall victimto the temptations of the peach stands on every street corner. I can not just buy one peach or two or a evenbag. No, I haveto buy a box because they all are so beautiful I dont want to leave any behind. Then I get home and quickly realize Id better get to work or my peaches will suffer. Of course, canning is a great way to preserve peaches however after canning 60 plus quarts of amazing peaches my family told me they really didnt like canned peaches. What? I guess I should be relieved to not have to endure the laborious process of canning peachesbut now I feel the pressure to get creative with my fresh peaches and savor the peach season as long as I can. If you also want to explore the diversity of peaches here are some ideas to spark your creativity.

As with any ingredient think sweet and savory. Peaches are a great example of a fruit that works wonderfully in both. Peaches pair well with so many other ingredients it would be a long list to name them all but here are the most popular: almonds, pistachios, walnuts,raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, lemon, chilies, jalapeos,cinnamon, sugar, nutmeg, vanilla, honey, cream, crme fraiche, yogurt, ice cream, balsamic vinegar, ginger, lavender, mint,cilantro, basil, bourbon, brandy, champagne, cognac, Cointreau, rum. Peaches also pair well with chicken, pork, some beef, and light fish.

Experiment with peaches in cakes, muffins, breads, tarts, cobblers, pies, cold soups, grilled for dessert and if you want to get real creative surprise your family with the famous Peach Melba for dessert with a quick history lesson. Peach Melba is a French dessert created in the late 1800sby the world famous French Chef Auguste Escoffier. Simply delicious, a poached peach served with raspberry sauce and vanillaice cream.Need I say more?

Taking peachesin a savory direction,think sauces, salsas, pork, ham, chicken, and fish. Jalapeno peach jam, fresh peach salsa and pureed peaches are great accompaniments to any summer meal. Think of other applications where other fruits and vegetables are used, for example bruschetta. Replace tomatoes with diced peaches, drizzle withbalsamic vinegarand put a fresh peachspin on it!You will not be disappointed!

For a traditional Bellini, originating inVenice, Italy, puree peaches and serve in aglasswith Prosecco sparkling wine. For anon-alcoholic version I like topour about one tablespoon simple ginger syrup in a wine glass, add a peach slice andfill with sparkling water. Yum!

Just be sure that if you fall victim to the temptations of the local fruit stand that you are prepared to get sticky!


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