May 24, 2013
Written by Robin Glowa
Thursday, 30 August 2012 13:27
A ripe peach is perhaps the most exquisite summer fruit.
A perfect example of lush, natural flavor, ripe peaches are so very, very beautiful. Gorgeous round globes, kissed with shades of pink, orange and yellow and covered in a barely discernible soft fuzz, peaches have long been a favorite inspiration for painters as well as cooks.
When gently pressed, a peach at its peak will release the most lovely fragrance, capturing the very essence of summer.
Fresh summer peaches are such a celebratory ingredient, bringing joyful pleasure to the table when transformed into delectable pies, tarts, muffins, breads, cheesecakes, cobblers and crisps. Sliced and sautéed peaches add exquisite flavor to bowls of yogurt, or scattered over pancakes and French toast. Homemade peach ice cream is the quintessential warm weather treat.
Peaches translate well to savory preparations as well. Peach and habanero salsa will supply sweetly powerful heat to grilled chicken and fish. A salad of sliced peaches, prosciutto, and baby greens dressed in a light vinaigrette is quite elegant.
Peach halves can be grilled until slightly caramelized and offered as a fantastic accompaniment to grilled pork tenderloin. Those same grilled peach halves can do double duty as dessert, when the cavity is filled with mascarpone, drizzled with honey and topped with crunchy almonds or hazelnuts.
Even unadorned peaches are a succulent and deeply satisfying summer treat. Not only are they amazingly juicy and delicious, peaches are particularly healthful. One large peach has about 68 calories and no fat.
A good source of potassium and fiber, peaches also offer vitamin A, which can promote healthy vision; vitamin C, an excellent anti-oxidant and tissue builder; and vitamin E, another important anti-oxidant. Our bodies are subject to all manner of pollutants and environmental stresses and consuming natural sources of anti-oxidants can help ward off chronic diseases.
Fresh peaches from your local farmer’s markets are simply spectacular. Enjoy this sensational fruit as you celebrate the last days of summer and prepare your delicious life!
3-4 large fresh peaches, peeled, pitted and minced
1/2 habanero pepper, seeded, finely minced (or use jalapeno pepper as habaneros are hot)
2 tablespoons minced red onion or sweet onion
juice of 1 fresh lime
1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 cup finely chopped cilantro (optional)
Mix all ingredients together gently. Put in a bowl and let rest for about 2 hours.
Robin Glowa, HHC, AADP is a food professional who teaches healthy cooking to adults and children. A graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, Robin also writes and blogs about healthy foods and lifestyles. For more information go to www.theconsciouscook.net.
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