This time of year brings out the best in fruits and vegetables. Nothing beats something grown in our own backyards or fields not far from our homes. It makes it easy to eat “farm to table” every night.
The peach crop has been especially bountiful, rightfully earning our state’s name as The Peach State. All varieties have their own attributes but the O’Henry’s and Lorings are my personal favorites.
Here are a couple of ways to put this fabulous fruit to good use. The first is a recipe from a few years ago that gained instant popularity on my blog, cookingwithcrevolyn.com. You just can’t go wrong with Peach Pound Cake.
A few tips for creating the perfect pound cake: 1. Before combining any of the ingredients, make sure they are at room temperature. This will result in a cake with a perfect texture. 2. Take time to properly cream the butter and sugar together until it’s fluffy and light. 3. Resist the urge to over-mix once the dry ingredients are added. 4. Prep the cake pan well. I prefer butter and sugar to coat. 5. When baking, place the cake pan in the center of the oven and keep the oven door closed until reaching the minimum baking time.
This Peach Salsa is delicious and an excellent accompaniment to chicken, turkey or pork. It will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week.
Peach Pound Cake
- Butter and sugar for coating pan
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 2 cups white sugar
- 4 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 cups fresh or frozen peaches, peeled, pitted and chopped
Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Coat a 10-inch tube pan with butter and then dust with white sugar. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well with each addition, then stir in the vanilla. Reserve ¼ cup of flour and sift together the remaining flour, baking powder and salt. Gradually stir into the creamed mixture. Use the reserved Ú cup flour to coat the peaches then fold the floured peaches into the batter. Spread evenly into the prepared pan. Bake for 50-60 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out clean. Be careful not to overcook. Allow cake to cool in the pan for 10 minutes before inverting onto a wire rack to cool completely.
- ½ cup apple cider vinegar
- ½ cup light brown sugar
- ¾ cup finely chopped onion
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- 1/3 cup golden raisins
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 ½ cup fresh ripe peaches, cut into small pieces
Combine the vinegar and sugar in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Over medium heat, stir mixture to dissolve sugar. Reduce to a simmer and add the onion, garlic, raisins and salt. Simmer for 10 minutes stirring occasionally. Add the peaches and simmer an additional 10 minutes until peaches are tender. Remove from heat and let stand for 15 minutes before serving.
Crevolyn Wiley is a Gainesville resident and author of the cookbook “Cooking with Crevolyn” available at J&J Foods.