Stone Fruit - Tis the Season
Guest Writter: Sam the Cooking Guy
Can there be anything better than local stone fruit this time of year? And since the season is not all that long, it’s time to get buying and get eating. Because whether it’s peaches, apricots, plums or nectarines – the time is now.
Look for fruit with brightly colored flesh and no brown spots or bruises. Give it a gentle squeeze - it should be firm but supple and if it yields gently it’ll be great. If it’s wrinkly, it’s on the way out and you should avoid. If you see green patches, it’s likely to be under-ripe, not that that’s necessarily a bad thing. Peaches and nectarines will ripen if left on a kitchen counter – preferably stem-side down and not touching. Press the top of your finger gently near the stem of the fruit. If it dents easily, it is ripe.
For unripe, keep them uncovered at room temperature for a day or two. When ripe, you can slow down the ripening by now storing in the crisper drawer of your fridge. But remember – stone fruit bruises easily, so be gentle and avoid stacking more than a couple high.
This is the fun part:
- Simply grab right out of the fridge to eat plain
- Cut open, basted with melted butter & dark rum then grilled to serve with ice cream
- In a jam or preserve
- In pancakes
- In muffins
- With granola & yogurt in the morning
- Turned into a smoothie
- Muddled with lime and then with bourbon for a wonderful summer cocktail
- Or with other fruit for a pie cooked on the grill – see the Grilled Peach & Blueberry Pie recipe
The point is – just find some, buy some and eat some. Because once it’s gone, we’re back to canned fruit or the stuff brought in from who knows where that’ll cost you God knows what.