The local peaches are in from Young Farm. They are amazingly good, with the kind of all-too-rare correct texture that makes even me, who generally prefers her stone fruit cooked, happy to eat them raw and dripping. But of course, like all fruit, they are wonderful cooked with a little sugar, and I am very fond of them with pound cake.
In the process of cleaning out my freezer in Little Compton, I came across a single chicken breast, and a little rye bread that I had made this summer. I had two peaches on the counter, so I decided I would make a last lunch for Carlton with it all before I left. I toasted the bread and pan-grilled the chicken; peeled and sliced the peaches; and sautéed them in some butter, brown sugar, salt and pepper, and a splash of lemon. I topped the chicken crostini with the peaches and walked them over to Carlton with a half-full bottle of Sauvignon Blanc. We had a very nice chat and I had a needed break from packing.
My friend Anne loves Karla’s peaches as well. They were part of her Southern ladies’ luncheon a few years ago, and of course, we both like peach pie when the spice and thickening are just so. Peaches are made for preserving, and Anne told me that when she looked at a peach the other day she thought it was so beautiful that she decided to make some jam and leave the skin on. I do that when I make jam with local cherry tomatoes, so this made perfect sense to me. Here are Ann’s iphone photos, which I fooled with a bit, and how she made her chunky preserve. As she said, all pink and yellow and lovely.
Ann’s Peach Preserve
6 cups sliced and roughly chopped peaches
3 cups sugar
¼ vanilla bean (the long ones), split and scraped
Mix and boil, skimming, until it reaches about 220 F.