Posted by: ktzefr | July 18, 2011

It’s a peachy time of year…

“To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.”  Ecclesiastes 3:1

Ripe Carolina peaches; Photo:KFawcett

When I was growing up in Kentucky our lives were arranged according to the seasons and traditions.  Holidays were the same — Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, 4th of July — but we also had traditional activities that fell in amongst the big events.  There was hog-killing time at Thanksgiving, which I always dreaded, and chicken-killing Saturdays throughout the year that were just as bad.  The women made flowers for Decoration Day and we picked blackberries in the worst heat of summer.   Every year about this time someone would come by our store with a truckload of peaches to sell.  We’d usually buy a bushel or two and my mom and her older sister, whom we called Granny Wren, would drop the fruit into boiling water, remove the peel, and spend the day canning peaches. 

I love to cook, but I’ve never had the urge to can.  It must have skipped a generation as my son, the chef, has taken an interest in jam making and has filled jars and pantry this summer.   This past weekend he turned these perfectly-ripe Carolina peaches (above) into chunky preserves (below).

Just-canned peach preserves; Photo:KFawcett

 

I love the summer time.  My three favorite foods — other than chocolate and bacon — are summer fruits.  Watermelon, blackberries, and peaches.  I wouldn’t do anything to a watermelon except chill it.  A ripe melon is perfect as it is…so are blackberries and peaches.  However, I also like to cook with peaches.  I love cobbler and crisp and peaches and cream, but I’ve also concocted a few other, easy peach creations.  Check these out.  (I’m not a perfectionist when it comes to amounts, so I tend to measure in pinches and handfuls and dashes.  So be flexible.)

Peach and Pound Cake Dessert

Pound cake (bake or buy the best one you can find)

Peaches, sliced (about one peach per serving)

Butter

Brown Sugar

Grand Marnier or Triple Sec (optional for optimum taste)

Vanilla ice cream

Melt butter in a fry pan and add the peaches.  Saute gently for about 5 minutes.  Add brown sugar generously (depending on the amount of peaches/number of servings).  Continue on low heat until sugar melts and mixes with butter. 

To serve:  For each serving (a small bowl is best) use a slice of pound cake (sprinkled with a teaspoon of Grand Marnier), a scoop of ice cream, and top with the warm (not hot!) peach mixture.  You may also add some fresh, uncooked peaches.  It’s simple and amazing!

Carolina peach preserves; Photo:KFawcett

 

Ahh….preserves.  Try these with pork tenderloin.

Peaches and Pork

2 pork tenderloins

Sauce:

1 small jar peach preserves

1/8 cup ketchup

1/8 to 1/4 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup orange juice

2  peaches

*****

Stir together all of the ingredients except the peaches and place on medium heat until the sauce becomes bubbly and thick.  Add the peaches (sliced) and turn off the heat until you’re ready to serve the sauce.  Reheat 3 or 4 minutes.  Serve hot over the pork roast.

Marinade for pork:

1 tsp. basil

1 tsp. oregano

salt & pepper to taste

1/2 tsp. smoked paprika

4 or 5 garlic cloves

olive oil

balsamic vinegar

***

Make diamond-shaped cuts across the pork tenderloins and fill them with thin slices of the garlic.  Mix all other ingredients with a whisk and rub on the pork.  Marinate for several hours or overnight.

Grill pork tenderloins on high flame (gas grill is better as you can regulate heat) for about 5 minutes on each side.  Then turn flame to the lowest setting, triple wrap the pork in foil with extra marinade (if not much left, add some orange juice) and place back on the grill for about 1 to 2 hours, depending on size.  If you don’t have a gas grill, it’s best to roast the pork in the oven after browning on the outside grill.   Slice and serve with the hot peach sauce.

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