Stone Fruit Salsa

Even though I’ve been eating peaches, plums and nectarines for what seems like weeks on end, I couldn’t stop eating this salsa. If only I could sneak a little jalapeno into the mix, it would be stellar.

My youngest tentatively snacked on this dip even though she saw me nonchalantly cutting up the yellow tomatoes. She is (currently) not a tomato fan. It was either a moment of genius on my part or dumb luck that she even tried it; most likely the latter.

1 medium ripe plum, pitted and chopped
1 medium ripe peach, pitted and chopped
1 medium ripe nectarine, pitted and chopped
1 medium yellow tomato, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons chopped purple onion (optional)
1 tablespoons fresh lime juice (from 1/2 lime)
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

In a small bowl, mix together the plum, peach, nectarine, and tomato. Add the cilantro, onion, lime juice and salt and stir until they are well distributed. Serve with tortilla chips.

Yield: 2 cups
Prep-time: 10 minutes

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Pie for Breakfast! (Granola Tart Shells)

These tart shells are super easy to throw together and there is no rolling out of the dough. They take as much time and effort as throwing together a batch of cookies. I still love cookies, but these are a delightful and healthier alternative that can serve as a breakfast treat, snack, or dessert.

Whenever any kind of fresh raw fruit is piled into tart shells, the kids are completely on board. My favorite way to fill it up so far is with fresh chopped peaches, strained yogurt, and honey. Add a dash of cinnamon on top if you dare.

The only warning I should give is that it isn’t the easiest crust to cut up. It’s on the hard and crumbly side. So, don’t hate me if the kids (or grown-ups) make a mess.

1/2 cup white whole wheat or whole wheat pastry flour
2 cups oats & honey granola (I use store-bought)
3/4 cups walnut pieces
Pinch salt
3 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons butter, melted
3 tablespoons virgin coconut oil, melted

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.

Place the flour, granola, walnuts, and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Run the food processor for approximately 30 seconds or until the mixture resembles large crumbs. Drizzle the honey through the feed tube of the food processor and incorporate for a five seconds. Then pour the melted and butter and coconut oil through the feed tube with the machine running and process until the mixture starts to come together.

Take one large golf ball-sized portion of dough at a time and press it gently into a 4-inch round tart pan with removable bottoms until it covers the bottom and sides of the pan.  You should have enough dough to make 8 shells. Place the filled tart pans on a baking sheet and bake for 10-15 minutes or until golden brown.

Place baked shells on a cooling rack and allow to cool completely. To serve, remove gently from tart pan by popping up the removeable bottom. The shells may be stored in the pans in an airtight container for up to two days.

Yield: 8 4-inch tart shells
Prep-time: 20 minutes
Bake-time: 10 minutes

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Peachy Shaved Ice

I recently picked up 8 quarts of hail-damaged peaches that needed to be dealt with in a hurry. I decided it was time to squeeze one last frozen treat into our summer and make some granita. The Nectarine Granita recipe in David Lebowitz’s The Perfect Scoop served as my guide.

While it does need to freeze overnight, this is a relatively low maintenance and healthy frozen treat that does not require an ice cream maker. The only real pain was making room in my freezer. And the kids love it.

6 large ripe peaches (2 pounds)
1 cup water
1/4 – 1/3 cup honey (depending on preference and sweetness of fruit)
Tiny pinch salt

Wash, peel, and pit the peaches. I have a vegetable peeler that has little teeth on it that does the trick.* Place the pitted peaches and water in a medium saucepan over medium high heat. Bring to a low boil. Reduce heat to medium and cook uncovered for 10 minutes or until the fruit is soft.  Remove from heat and stir in the honey and salt.

Allow the peach mixture to cool. Transfer the mixture to a blender to puree or use a hand/immersion blender. When the mixture is smooth, pour it into a 8 x12-inch (or thereabouts) baking pan. Cover with with plastic wrap and place on a level surface in your freezer.

In a couple hours, peel back the plastic wrap and check on the peach mixture by giving it a stir from the outside in. Check it one or two more times through the course of the day moving the frozen edges into the center while stirring.

Eventually, the mixture will freeze solid. It always seems to need to sit overnight for me. But maybe your freezer will work faster than mine. When it is solid and you are ready to serve, simply scrape it with a fork until you have enough fluffy frozen goodness to fill your bowl. Return the remainder to the freezer covered with plastic wrap.

Yield: maybe 6 cups
Prep-time: 20 minutes
Freeze-time: overnight

*Note: If your peeler doesn’t cooperate, I’ve heard you can dunk peaches in boiling water for a minute, run them under cold water, and then the peel will come off easily.

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Fresh Peach Sauce

This recipe requires farm fresh local peaches. No grocery store peaches. No. No. No.

4 ripe peaches, pitted and roughly chopped
1 teaspoon sugar

Puree peaches and sugar in a medium bowl using a hand blender or in a blender.

Pour the puree through a strainer set on top of a medium bowl. Use a rubber spatula to push the pulp through. Set the strainer aside and discard the bits that did not pass through. Serve or store the sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to three days.

Yield: 1 1/2 cups
Prep-time: 10 minutes

Peaches with Strawberry Sauce

If you don’t have champagne vinegar, try replacing it with fresh squeezed lemon juice. I’m in love with the sauce just the way it is though.

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1 cup frozen organic unsweetened strawberries, thawed
1 teaspoon champagne vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
4 ripe organic peaches, pitted and sliced
Whipped cream (optional)

In a blender, puree strawberries, vinegar, and sugar until smooth. Set aside. Divide the peach slices between four small bowls. Top with 2-3 tablespoons of the the strawberry puree. Add a dollop of whipped cream if desired. Serve.

Makes 3-4 servings.
Prep time: 10 minutes

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