Pat Lutz’s juicy peaches.

I hope you read this column before you go to the grocery store or have your groceries delivered because you will definitely want to make one or more of these peach recipes. Peachy keen … right? I love peaches fresh, as a condiment, baked in a pie, as a sweet bread, or even baked in a savory dish, and my all-time favorite breakfast is a peach/mango/pineapple shake. 

So, where do you get your peaches? I’m the crazy wife riding in the car or truck who shouts out, “I see peaches for sale!” and begs my husband to stop the car. Most times, however, we just zoom on by in a hurry to get to a slow relaxing vacation, LOL!

However, The Kingwood Farmers Market in Town Center quite often has a vender with peaches for sale. On our way home from shopping a few Thursdays ago I convinced him to stop. 10 for $10. We had our peach expert with us, our granddaughter Presley. She spent a few minutes checking out the bushels of peaches before she picked out the 10 that she said were the best. I was a bit hesitant as they were so small, but they looked very good and ripe. The farmer selling them even gave her one extra to eat on the way home after he washed it for her. In the truck, with the first bite, she had warm peach juice all over her face. And although she had a napkin, the juice was slowly running through her fingers and down her arm, but she didn’t seem to mind. Within just a few minutes, she had devoured all but the pit!  So if you haven’t gone, you need to check out that Farmer’s Market on Thursdays! After our visit it got me thinking, maybe I should grow a fruit tree or two. I often consider it as I see fruit trees all over our neighborhood: fig, orange, lime, lemon mandarin, pawpaw trees and even olive trees! But no peach trees. So until I plant a tree, I will continue to buy mine at the Farmer’s Market, our local grocery stores and even “The Peach Truck Tour.” Last I heard it made a stop in Porter. Here is the promotion for the peach truck, thepeachtruck.com/pages/all-locations. A 25-pound box of peaches was $42, and “The Peach Truck Cookbook” they sell is $25! Make sure and ask the team about The Peach Truck Special! Now, if you have a bushel or a peck of peaches and need a few recipes, “Please Join Our Table” as we share a few savory and sweet recipes with you!

Peach Crostata (an Italian jam tart)

1 Pillsbury refrigerated pie crust 
5 large freestone peaches, peeled and thinly sliced, pits removed|
2/3 cup firm ripe black plums, unpeeled or 2/3 cup blueberries (optional)
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed orange juice or orange liquor 
1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
2 tablespoons arrowroot or all-purpose flour
1 whole egg, beaten
2-3 tablespoons powdered sugar 

Topping ingredients

1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter, diced

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place the pie dough onto the baking sheet. In a bowl, mix peaches, figs or blueberries, sugar, orange juice, nutmeg and flour together. Carefully pour mixture into the center of the pastry round. Leave 2 1/2 inches all around the edge. For topping, combine the flour, sugar and salt in the bowl of a food processor or mini chopper. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture is crumbly. 

Sprinkle topping evenly over the fruit. Gently fold the border of the pastry over the fruit to make a 2-3-inch rim. Brush pastry with the beaten egg. Bake for 25-35 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown and the fruit is bubbling. Remove from the oven, Let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes, then with 2 spatulas, move it to a cooling rack. Sift powdered sugar on top and serve warm.

Bubbly Peach-Raspberry Lemonade 

Makes 6 large glasses  

1/3 cup agave nectar or the equivalent using Monk juice 
8 ounces raspberries
3 medium freestone peaches, peeled, sliced, with pits removed
1 1/2 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice
6 sprigs of mint
3 cups soda water and 2 cups of flat plain water or use all plain flat water 

In a medium saucepan, combine 1 cup water and agave over medium heat until the agave has dissolved, about 1 minute. Add peaches and raspberries and simmer, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Raspberries and peaches should be soft. Place peach-raspberry mixture in a blender. Do not put the top on the blender and use a clean towel to cover the top instead to prevent splatters. Blend until smooth, about 1 minute; let cool completely before straining through cheesecloth or straining bag. In a large pitcher, whisk together raspberry-peach mixture, lemon juice and 2 cups water. Place in the refrigerator until chilled. Add soda water and serve over ice with a raspberry and mint garnish, if desired.

My Peach-Pineapple Salsa

Makes 2 cups

1/2 cup fresh pineapple, diced
2 medium freestone peaches, peeled, pitted and diced
1/3 cup red bell pepper, chopped
1/4 cup red onion, chopped
1 large jalapeno, minced
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon lime juice
2 teaspoons fresh chopped cilantro leaves, stems removed 

Combine peaches, pineapple, bell pepper, red onion and jalapeno in a chopper/blender/food processor. Pulse to rough chunky stage or desired texture. Pour into a medium bowl. In a small bowl, whisk together apple cider vinegar, salt and lime juice. Pour over pineapple mixture and stir to combine. Fold in cilantro and mix well. Use immediately or keep in fridge for up to 1 week.

Karen Boughton
Author: Karen BoughtonEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
I grew up in a big, Greek, cooking family. I married my high school sweetheart and soon had three daughters. My husband and I worked in the family’s Greek restaurant, “Zorba’s,” for several years before moving to Baton Rouge and eventually Corpus Christi. There I taught microwave cooking classes for Amana.in studio and on television for three years before moving to Kingwood in the late '80s. I reached out to learn more about regional and international foods, spending 16 years in management in private athletic/dining/country clubs for ClubCorp, where I embraced health and cooking. In 2008 I joined the Tribune Newspapers as food editor, the same time that I became a nutrition advisor and USANA Health Sciences Associate. These two passions have given me better health and the freedom to live life my way.

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