I can't grow peaches.
With an extremely short growing season, fruit trees are not grown here on the farm. This past week I was in Roosevelt and drove down the hill and up the street to Neola and harvested peaches, prunes, and apples.
We promptly ate most of the peaches.......
eating them on the way home,
peach juice running down our chins,
unpeeled (she doesn't spray),
putting them in a pretty porcelain bowl,
sprinkling with organic sugar,
and covering with REAL CREAM.
We will harvest more and preserve them over the next few weeks
|an original rendering of peaches and cream--there is REAL CREAM in the pitcher|
Here are several ways to enjoy the peach harvest all year long:
FREEZING: wash peaches, if organic I leave the skin on. Cut in half, remove the pit and then cut each half in thirds. Drop cut slices into a bowl of cold water that you have added vinegar or citric acid to. This prevents the peach from browning. Let soak 3 to 5 minutes. Remove peaches, add a little sugar and place in freezer bags and freeze. Use in smoothies or just thaw and eat....with real cream of course!
DRYING: Follow the instructions above. After soaking in vinegar place on drying rack and dry to a leathery consistency. I am fortunate to have a large 4 foot tall home-made food dehydrator, but if you do not have one try this: Place peaches on a large window screen and put it in your car. Allow the moisture to drip of the peaches before placing them in the car to avoid sticky syrup dripping on your seats. I dry veges this way also.
We also use our glass covered cold frames. Placing the window screens on bricks, with the back raised to a higher angle to take advantage of the sun's rays.
FRUIT LEATHER: Wash and peel ( I leave the skin on). Sweeten if desired. Puree in a food processor. Making sure there are no lumps. Pour into a plastic wrap lined baking sheet. Place in a low temp oven and leave the door ajar. Or line the racks of your food dehydrator with plastic wrap. I have had the plastic melt using a small store bought dehydrator so I am leery of suggesting to use a purchased food dryer. Once again I suggest the back window in the car, just check it often. Or even a sunny south facing window works well. Do not let the leather get too dry and brittle, it needs to be pliable. Roll up removing the plastic as you roll and then roll in plastic wrap and store in an air tight container. Check for signs of mold after a few days.-------just an interesting fact------years ago before all our modern conveniences, fruit was pulverized in a rock basin used to grind corn and grain and then spread out on a large leather hide to dry.
CANNING/JAMS: follow the usda recommendations for canning and preserving. Guideline booklets can be purchased at your local extension office or at the hardware store that carries canning supplies.