Archive for the ‘Peaches’ Category

Southern Peach Cobbler

August 25, 2008

Since DH had brought me home so many peaches, I figured I needed to make a dessert with them!

I rather hate making pie, so when I came across this cobbler recipe, I thought I’d give it a shot instead.

It was the best cobbler I’ve ever had. Hands down. And it would be JUST as good with any type of fruit!

The most impressive part is the fact that we finished the last of the cobbler 6 days after I made it — and the topping was still nice and crisp! No soggies!

Southern Peach Cobbler
(All Recipes)

8 fresh peaches – peeled, pitted and sliced into thin wedges
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg (I omitted)
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons cornstarch

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
1/4 cup boiling water

Cinnamon-Sugar Mixture:
3 tablespoons white sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions
– Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
– In a large bowl, combine peaches, 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon juice, and cornstarch.
– Toss to coat evenly, and pour into a 2 quart baking dish (I used a 9 x 13 pan and it worked great).
– Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes.
– Meanwhile, in a large bowl, combine flour, 1/4 cup white sugar, 1/4 cup brown sugar, baking powder, and salt.
– Blend in butter with your fingertips, or a pastry blender, until mixture resembles coarse meal. – Stir in water until just combined.
– Remove peaches from oven, and drop spoonfuls of topping over them.
– Sprinkle entire cobbler with the sugar and cinnamon mixture.
– Bake until topping is golden, about 30 minutes. (Mine was only about 23-25 minutes)

Sorry for the pictures — I didn’t get any single-serving images!

Edit: I’ve entered this cobbler in Joelen’s Culinary Adventures blog event — Cobblers, Crumbles, and Crisps, Oh My!

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How To: Freeze Fresh Peaches

August 17, 2008

My dear DH acquired a bushel of beautiful local peaches for me late last week. I gave half to another baker-friend at work, but I still had 25 peaches to deal with!

After peach ice cream Friday night, peach milkshakes Saturday, and a peach cobbler on Sunday, I knew I had to find some way to store the remainder of my peaches before they went bad.
As I’m still in a teeny apartment, canning was out. No place to store it.
But I could freeze them!
I did some research on the proper way to freeze peaches, because I wanted to make sure they’d be useful in more than just smoothies when I defrosted them.
I came across a fabulous set of directions here — and decided that if I didn’t know the proper way to freeze peaches, other people probably didn’t either — so here ya go!
Freezing Peaches *
*This process is also recommended for plums, cherries, or nectarines

Step 1: Select Your Fruit
– Fruit should be sweet, and ripe, but not overly-ripe and mushy
Step 2: How Many Peaches?
– It takes 5-6 good-sized peaches (or 10 plums) to produce 1 quart of frozen fruit
Step 3: Prepare the Sugar (or other sweetener) Solution
– You can store your peaches in simple syrup, peach, white grape, or apple juice — your choice!
– This sugar-y solution/fruit juice is added to help improve flavor and keep the fruit from turning nasty shades of brown while frozen
– This handy table came from the http://www.pickyourown.org website. It’s handy if you’re making a simple syrup to use for this process. 
– Choose your level of sweetness by how sweet your fruit is.
– To make the syrup: Heat the water on the stove, and slowly stir in the sugar/Splenda, until completely dissolved. Remove from heat, and let the syrup cool completely before adding to the peaches.
You’ll need about 1 cup of simple syrup per quart of peaches

Type of Syrup Sugar Water Yield
Fruit juice (peach, apple or white grape) 0 0 4 cups
Splenda (2 cups) 0 6 cups 6 cups
Light sugar 2 cups 6 cups 7 cups
Medium sugar 3 cups 6 cups 6 1/2 cups
Heavy sugar 4 cups 6 cups 7 cups
Step 4: Wash the Peaches
 Seriously…you can handle this step on your own.


Step 5: Peeling the Peaches
– Don’t do this by hand — it’s a pain!
– Bring to a boil a large pot of water, add the washed peaches for 20-45 seconds. Then remove with a slotted spoon and immediately place in an ice water bath for several minutes.
– When you remove the peaches from their ice water bath, the skins will be easy to peel off.

Step 6: Cut Up the Peaches
 Remove the pits and slice the peaches however you prefer — slices, quarters, whatever
– Be sure to remove any brown or mushy spots

Step 7: Prevent the Fruit From Darkening
– You can use 1/4 cup lemon juice, or Fruit-Fresh to help preserve the peaches color
– Add your lemon juice or fruit fresh, and gently mix with your hands to make sure all your peaches are covered

Step 8: Mix the Peaches with the Sweetener Solution
– In a large bowl, mix your sliced peaches, and 1 cup of the completely-cooled simple syrup (or fruit juice) 
– Fill Ziploc bags (use the freezer style!) or Tupperware containers with peaches and simple syrup (Quart ziploc’s work perfectly, but all I had was Gallon!)

Step 9: Freeze
– Place containers of peaches in the freezer to harden up. 

To Use:
– Set them in the fridge overnight, or on the counter for a couple of hours to thaw.

Fruit Salsa and Cinnamon-Sugar Tortilla Chips

July 12, 2008

This recipe was recently posted on the What’s Cooking board that I frequent. Everyone was asked what their “best” item was — and Robyn said hers was fruit salsa.

We all begged for the recipe, and this was what she told us!

This is AMAZING. Eating the fruit with the chips, it tastes like healthy apple pie! It’s deeeeelicious!
Warning: This makes enough to feed an Army. I didn’t stop to consider this when chopping the fruit, so now I’ve got enough fruit salsa for the Armed Forces. If you’re making this for 2 people (like I did) you may want to halve everything. If you’re making it for company — make the whole thing. They’ll eat every ounce!

Fruit Salsa
(Robyn, on What’s Cooking)

2 red apples
2 green apples
2 pears
2 peaches
1 carton raspberries (I used blueberries because DH doesn’t like raspberries)
3 tablespoons orange juice
2 teaspoons honey
2 lemons (or equivalent in juice)

Directions
– Dice all fruit very finely and put in a large mixing bowl
– Squeeze 1/2 a lemon’s worth of juice after each addition (1/2 lemon after adding all red apple, 1/2 lemon after adding all green apple, etc)
– Whisk together the orange juice and the honey and pour it over the fruit. Carefully mix together

**It’s best made the day before, and as long as you use plenty of lemon and orange juice, it won’t brown**

Cinnamon-Sugar Tortilla Chips
10-15 10″ flour tortillas (I had enourmous burrito tortillas…next time I’ll use smaller ones for smaller chips!)
melted butter
cinnamon/sugar mixture

Directions
– Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F
– Brush melted butter on whole tortilla and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar mix
– Use a pizza cutter and cut into 8 sections
– Fill up a baking sheet with them
– Bake at 350 degrees for 10-11 minutes, or until crisped up