From the Farm To My Table! was a program to create experiences with nature, food, and farming so participants can directly enjoy their deep connection to the bounty of our natural systems and interact directly with farmers responsible for some of our food. In the summer of 2013, we harvested Masumoto peaches and nectarines with our colleagues and preserved them at Homeward Bound of Marin in Novato, CA.
From peach picking to canning and jamming, we wanted to ensure our participants (and anyone else) can thoroughly enjoy delicious peaches! Here are some links to online recipes -- from Southern Living, Allrecipies.com, Cooking Light, Brown Eyed Baker, as well as those below from Frog Hollow Farms -- that will make your mouth water over a satisfying meal!
A Vital Systems Staff Original
The Peach Thing (Peach Custard-Cobbler)
5 to 8 gorgeous peaches
1 cup flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 pinches of salt
1/2 to 1 full cup of pure vegetable oil (sunflower oil recommended)
1 cup & 1 tablespoon turbinado sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
By hand, mix three fresh eggs in a mixing bowl with 1 cup turbinado sugar, ½ to 1 cup of pure vegetable oil (recommend sunflower), a pinch of salt and a capful of vanilla extract. Mix until smooth.
Dry mix: 1 cup organic white unbleached flour with 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder and a pinch of salt.
Fold dry mix into egg batter.
Cut peaches into 1/8 size crescent-moon wedges. Drop into 6 by 12 pre-greased glass baking pan, toss peaches with a teaspoon of sugar and oil.
Pour custard mixture over dressed peaches. Bake for approximately 20 minutes at 400 degrees, until golden brown.
The finished product:
From Frog Hollow Farms, shared with permission
1/3 cup olive oil
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon minced garlic
¼ cup pitted kalamata olives
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2-3 peaches cut into 8-12 pieces
1 cup parsley leaves
2 pounds chicken breasts
1 pound sausage
2 red peppers, cut into chunks
1 red onion, cut into chunks
¼ cup extra veggies of your choice, cut into chunks
Fire up the barbeque. Grill chicken, sausage, and vegetables.
Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together the olive oil, vinegar, and garlic. Add the olives and salt and pepper to taste.
With a sharp paring knife, cut the peaches into large bite size pieces. Separate parsley leaves from stems and set aside. When the meat is about half done, add the peaches and parsley to the bowl to marinate.
When the meat and vegetables are done, remove them from the grill. Cut the meat into bite size pieces and toss everything into the bowl. Mix well so that everything is well coated. Salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately.
Pork Tenderloin with Peaches and Mustard
1 pound peaches (about 2 large Suncrest)
½ cup frog hollow farms conserve – try nectarine, plum, apricot, peach or apricot cherr
1 clove garlic, pressed
2 small pork tenderloins, about 1 ½ - 2 pounts total
Fresh ground pepper
In a small bowl mix together the conserve and mustard. Place half of the mixture into a large bowl and add to it the garlic.
Preheat your broiler and cover you broiling pan with tin foil.
With a sharp knife, cut the peaches in half and then slice them into pieces about ¼ inch think. Cut the slices into chunks. Toss the peaches into the small bowl of the conserve and mustard mixture.
Pat the pork dry and season it all over with salt and pepper. Place the pork in the larger bowl with conserve, mustard, garlic mixture and coat it well.
Place the pork on the broiler pan being careful not to crowd it and spoon the peaches around and in between the two tenderloins. Broil about 6 inches from the heat source for about 10 minutes until browned on one side. Then flip it and continue broiling for another 5-10 minutes. An instant read thermometer should read 145 degrees when inserted into the middle of the loin. Or slice the loin in half to check for doneness. It should be white with just slight hint of pink in the center.
Remove the pork from the broiler pand and let it rest on a cutting board for 5 minutes before slicing crosswise. Place the pork slices onto a platter and spoon the peaches over the pork.
Jane’s Summer Peach Salsa
1 or 2 large peaches or 3-4 smaller peaches
2 or 3 favorite heirloom tomatoes
Your favorite green herb
Fresh ground pepper
Wash the peaches and cut them in half. Then after taking out the stone seed, chop coarsely, and squeeze a bit of lemon on them so they brown or discolor. Then chop a few favorite heirloom tomatoes. Try Early Girl or Black Brandywine or any Brandywine tomatoes, or the Old Germans if you’re lucky enough to find one those! Coarsely chop tomatoes and then select your favorite fresh green herb and slice into a chiffonade. Jane’s favorite so far this summer has been tarragon, but any variety of basil, cilantro, lemon verbena, bronze fennel, really any fragrant fresh herb will do depending on what you’re preparing to go with the salsa.
Add the fresh herbs, then sprinkle with good extra virgin olive oil, a bit of sea salt and fresh ground pepper and another very healthy squeeze of fresh lemon. Mix together and serve. Note that a finer sea salt will extract lots more fluid out of the fruit than using coarse salt like a kosher or large grained grey salt. Salt just before serving and squeeze extra lemon, meyer lemon or lime on the dish. The salsa is also good refrigerated for an hour to give it a chill or chill your ingredients beforehand.
This salsa is best used right away, but Jane’s had it overnight in her fridge to be eaten the following day with success.
The Summer Peach Salsa is good on main courses, be they meat, fish or vegetarian, is fabulous with chips, in wraps or really just eaten by itself!
Peach Bruschetta with Blue Cheese
4 slices country bread
Extra virgin olive oil for brushing
¼ pound blue cheese or gorgonzola
Preheat your broiler. Place the bread on a rimmed baking sheet and toast, turning over once to toast both sides. Both sides should be gold brown. Be sure to watch the bread because this will only take a few minutes.
While the bread is toasting, cut the peaches in half lengthwise and remove the pit. Peel the peach. Slice the peach into ¼ inch thick segments and then cut each segment in half horizontally, so you retain the crescent shape of the fruit.
When toasted, remove the bread from the oven. Brush both sides of the toast with olive oil and then spread the cheese on the warmed toast. Top each piece of bread with a few slices of peach and serve.
Oven Baked Nectarines with Pistachios and Crème Fraiche
4 tablespoons shelled pistachios
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
¼-1/2 cup of confectioners’ sugar
2 drops (les then 1/8 teaspoon) almond extract
½ cup crème fraiche
1 tablespoon granulated sugar (optional)
Preheat your oven to 400 F. in a food processor chop 3 tablespoons of the pistachios until finely chopped, almost to a meal. Add the butter, almond extract, confectioners’ sugar and the salt. Pulse until well combined.
Cut each of your nectarines in half then remove the pit. Place the nectarines on a large baking sheet with the cut side facing up and then squeeze the lemon juice all over the cut side. Add a heaping spoonful of the ingredients from the food processor into the cavity of nectarines. It’s ok if the ground nut mixture forms a mound. Coarsely chop the remaining pistachios and sprinkle them on top. Place in the oven to bake for 15-20 minutes until the fruit looks softened and the topping is a bit crisped. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for about 5 minutes.
While the fruit is baking, whisk the creme fraiche and optional granulated sugar.
Place each nectarine half on a plate, add a dollop of crème fraiche, and serve.
Fermented Fruit Soda
Ingredients and supplies
1 glass quart jar
1/3 cup water kefir grains (can be purchased online or at some health food stores)
¼ cup rapadura sugar or organic cane sugar
Approximately 1 cup sliced fruit (strawberries, peaches, apricots) – this week’s golden sweets could just be cut in half with pit removed
1. Fill the jar with filtered water, sugar and kefir grains. Lid can be loose or tight
2. Leave on counter for 48 hours and no more than that, then strain liquid.
3. Add fruit of your choice or other flavorings (ginger or herbs) to the strained liquid. Place liquid and fruit into a new jar, tighten the lid and leave on counter for another day.
4. Put liquid in fridge to chill and then enjoy!
You may save the drained kefir grains to be used again to start another batch of soda.