Celebrate Labor Day weekend and bid farewell to those lazy, hazy days by indulging in the ultimate summer fruit – sweet, juicy peaches. Few culinary delights can top the simple pleasure of biting into a juicy peach. In addition to their sweet taste and perfect portability, peaches also pack a lot of nutrition. One medium peach contains 2 grams of digestive health-promoting fiber, a good source of Vitamin C (promotes immune and skin health), and a good source of Vitamin A (important for vision health).
Selection & Storage
Select peaches that yield to gentle pressure when ripe and have blemish-free fuzzy firm skin. Store unripe peaches in a paper bag to ripen. When ripe, store at room temperature and eat within a few days.
Peaches are delicious as a beach-side snack or picnic accompaniment. But this weekend, think outside the culinary box and try these other sweet peach ideas …
Diced in a Salsa. Peel and dice peaches and toss with diced tomato, sliced green onion, diced bell pepper, diced jalapeño pepper, lime juice, pineapple juice and chopped fresh cilantro. Serve with jalapeno tortilla chips.
Puréed in a Bellini. Purée peaches and pour into champagne flutes, filling each glass halfway. Top with champagne or sparkling water.
Grilled & Topped with Ice Cream. Grill oiled peach halves over medium high-heat for 5-8 minutes cut-side down until caramelized. Top halves with light vanilla ice cream, a drizzle of honey and a mint sprig.
Sliced on a Salad. Toss butter lettuce with peach slices, toasted walnuts, crumbled reduced-fat blue cheese, extra virgin olive oil and a squeeze of lemon.
Jennifer Shea MS, MPH, RD