Alex is a marine biologist, aquarist, lover of animals, and an experienced veterinary assistant. She loves to write about cooking.
Fresh, Summertime Peaches
Most people get peaches from the supermarket. These fruits are at their best during the summer heat, which means they typically aren't available year-round—and if they are they most certainly are not local.
To reduce the carbon footprint of my household I always try to choose fruits and vegetables that are in season, and I try to buy local whenever possible. I even have a young peach tree growing on my apartment balcony, which has excitingly produced a total of 12 peaches this year. Peaches are one of my favorite parts of summertime.
One day, we hope to have enough land to grow several peach trees, as well as many other fruit trees and a large vegetable garden. There is something about produce you grow yourself that just tastes better. As I patiently wait for my dream property to become a reality, I like to visit local farms.
I'm very lucky in that there are quite a few farms not too far from where I live that offer a wide variety of you-pick fruits and vegetables. Peaches picked fresh from the tree taste way better than store-bought peaches. There, I said it. Not only that, but I'm able to get a lot more produce for a much better price.
Cost of Store-Bought vs. Farm Peaches
Take peaches for example. At the grocery store this last week, peaches were $3.99 per pound. At one of my local farms they were $10.50 per bucket. The guy working at the farm said each bucket holds about three to four pounds of peaches. I got eight pound of peaches for about $21 just by picking them myself. To give you an idea of the savings, eight pounds of peaches at the grocery store would have been just about $32. I saved about $11!
What Can You Do With Peaches?
As we have already covered, peaches are a summertime treat. Anyone that has ever bought peaches from the grocery store when they aren't ripe knows that there is a limited window before they become overripe mush. This means that they need to be consumed quickly. But what can you do with peaches? So much!
This year my little peach tree produced more peaches than it ever has before, but they were mostly small. What was worse was they all ripened about the same time. Since I didn't really have enough to do any baking and they were too small to make jam or snack on I was left with one option. I made peach syrup. For one morning we had pancakes with freshly made peach syrup and it was beautiful.
For the eight pounds of peaches I picked at the orchard I was able to do so much more. I was able to make two pints of peach jam, a peach pie, enough peach syrup for one meal (because it was just so good we had to have it again), and I still had four peaches left over for snacking. That's a lot of peaches.
What can you do with peaches? These are just a few examples of the dozens of things you can make with fresh peaches.
13 Ideas for Peaches
- peach cobbler
- peach custard
- peach crumble
- peach and mango salsa (great with tortilla chips or shrimp tacos)
- peaches and pork (peaches and pork loin are a match made in Heaven by the way)
- peach and mago sangria
- grilled peaches (which are fantastic in salads)
- peach pie (perfect with vanilla ice cream)
- peach jam
- peach syrup
- peach tarts
- peach compote (this would be amazing over ice cream, over cakes, and
- poached peaches
There are so many things you can do with peaches. They can be a great addition to sweet or savory dishes. They can even be added to spicy foods. Preserving peaches via canning slices or making jams and then canning them allows for the enjoyment of peaches year-round. Long ago this was a great way to ensure proper nutrition during the winter months when there wasn't a wide variety of fresh produce available.
Peaches are a great source of various nutrients. They have a large amount of vitamins A and C as well as a moderate amount of fiber. They even contain small amounts of several minerals, including iron, zinc, potassium, magnesium, and copper. They even provide beta-carotene, which is broken-down into vitamin A within the body.
Peaches do contain a decent amount of natural sugars and are low in protein. Overall, they are a low calorie food that make for a healthy snack.
Can Dogs Eat Peaches?
Working in a veterinary hospital I get asked a lot if dogs can eat various things. Some things are safe for dogs to eat while others are not safe. Peaches are safe for dogs to consume, in small quantities.
Peaches contain sugar and fiber, which can cause mild gastrointestinal upset. The pits or peaches can be a danger to dogs as they can cause an obstruction in the intestines and they contain a chemical called amygdalin which is broken down into cyanide when consumed.
If you are going to give peaches to your dog make sure they have been washed and are clear of any chemical pesticides and ideally have been cut into slices to avoid accidental pit consumption. Only give a small amount of peaches, and do not make it a regular part of the diet. A slice here and there is a great treat on a hot summer day.