How best to drink a peach? White or yellow, a Bellini is a noble way to devour every flavor molecule. At another extreme, there is Peach Agua Fresca, which was blogged here just a few days ago. The agua fresca, alcohol aside, is equally refreshing.
And, on yet another dimension — because it is does NOT lie between Bellini and agua fresca —is the peach margarita. Frozen, of course. Salt on the rim, if you desire. Or sugar. It’s a fruit you understand.
From The Perfect Peach, here is a recipe which I do enjoy. It has clever extensions, like the grenadine for both color and sweetness and it uses both lemon and lime juice. This is a recipe that has been honed and honed over bushels of peaches. It’s a good one, and you’ll enjoy it.
Is this what I make? I have but I do have some changes that I find excellent. I make mine with all lemon juice, no lime. And no triple sec or other orange liquor. You know that dusty bottle of peach liqueur on the back of your shelf? Use it now, it place of the orangey triple sec. If you are going peachy, go peachy.
Instead of 1 tablespoon of sugar and 1 of grenadine, I just use a quarter cup of sugar [or a half cup of simple syrup]. Too sweet? Well, it depends on the status of the peaches. You can back off the sugar if the peaches are really, really over the top. But if the peaches are at all under ripe, you need sugar to accelerate the flavor.
What’s all this mean? The Peach Margarita is quite flexible and adaptable to your personal tastes, the bottles in your liquor closet, and the quality of your peaches. If you make this drink ten times, you’ll have ten similar experiences but never the same.
If you make a standard margarita over and over again, with the same ingredients, you’ll get a common flavor. Strawberries? Pretty much the same flavor every time. Peaches? Different every time, which is why bartending is an art, not a science.
Oh, you don’t have a liquor closet? Only a liquor shelf? You are planning on expansion, aren’t you? Really, you should consider it. You could expand your current kitchen making the bar the centerpiece. And you could add a little refrigerator to store fruit and garnishes and different sugar syrups.
Actually, I don’t have a liquor closet either.
Frozen Peach Margarita
Yield: 4modest servings, 2 large
- Coarse salt, for coating
- 1 lime wedge
- 1½ cups peeled, pitted, and sliced fresh or partially thawed frozen peaches
- ½ cup tequila
- ½ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
- ½ cup triple sec
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon grenadine syrup
- 3+ cups ice
- 4 fresh mint leaves for garnish, optional
Make a small mound of salt on a saucer. To prepare the glasses, rub the lime wedge (or spent lime peels after juicing) along the rims of 4margarita glasses. Before the rims dry, invert each glass in the salt and rotate it to coat the circumference of the rim with salt. Put the glasses in the freezer to chill.
Combine the peaches, tequila, lime juice, triple sec, lemon juice, sugar, grenadine syrup, and ice in a blender and process until smooth.
Pour into the prepared glasses, float a mint leaf on each serving, and serve immediately.
Source: The Perfect Peach
Photo Information Canon T2i, EFS60mm Macro Lens, F/3.5for1/30thsecondatISO‑1600
Cobblers are an American creation, really an adaptation to circumstances. In colonial America the traditional British suet pudding could not be made. Cost, ingredients and equipment all were hurdles too high for those colonial families. Instead, a base of stewed filling, fruit filling, was covered with a layer of uncooked biscuits or dumplings.
Variation on the cobbler abound and include the Betty, the Grump, the Slump, the Buckle, the Pandowdy, and the Sonker. Crisps and Crumbles have an oatmeal-based topping instead of that biscuit.
Cobblers have an inherent visual appeal with the biscuit atop the bubbling fruit. Lately, there has been a trend towards individual desserts served in ramekins or small Mason jars. People love these very “personal” desserts and there is a cottage industry out there of books and recipes where clever chefs and writers design new combinations.
And some great chefs have long endorsed this concept. This recipe is from Alfred Portale and reflects a sophisticated balance of fruit components, sugar sweetness, and vanilla aromas. This recipe comes from Alfred Portale’s Twelve Seasons Cookbook published in 2000. The book may have a few years on its pages, but this recipe is ageless.
For a weekend party or brunch, this recipe scales very well. Need kitchen help if you are making a herd of these? Enlist the kids. They love the tasks of stuffing fruit into jars and carefully positioning that top biscuit. This is a graceful way to introduce kitchen creativity to your kids. The benefits could be enormous. You may have a young Portale in your household, and it would be a sin to hold them back.
Summer Berry and Peach Cobbler
Yield: 8 servings
For the filling:
- 5 medium ripe peaches, peeled, pitted and sliced
- 2 pints black berries, or assorted berries
- 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
- ½ cup sugar, or to taste depending on the ripeness of the peaches
For the topping:
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup unsalted butter, softened
- ⅓ cup plus 1 tablespoon buttermilk
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Have ready 8 ramekins, each about 5 inches in diameter.
In a medium bowl, toss together the fruit and vanilla bean and reserve for the assembly.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine and flour, sugar, baking powder and salt and blend to combine. Add the butter and mix on medium-high speed, until the mixture is crumbly. Add the buttermilk and mix again until the dough is combined.
Remove the vanilla bean from the fruit mixture and discard it. Equally fill each ramekin with the fruit, leaving room for the topping. Top each ramekin with a dollop of the topping. Brush the topping with the last tablespoon of buttermilk. Bake for about 35 minutes, until the crust is golden brown and the fruit is bubbling. Cool slightly on wire racks and serve with whipped cream or, even better, a Buttermilk Ice Cream.
Source: Alfred Portale’s Twelve Seasons Cookbook
Photo Information [top shot]: Canon T2i, EFS60mm Macro Lens, F/5.6 for1/60th second at ISO‑1600