What’s more luscious than a perfectly ripe peach, dripping with juice? One of summer’s most anticipated treats, the fuzzy-skinned
stone fruits are great in pies and even better all alone.
Season: May through August.
How to Choose Peaches
Choose fruits that give just slightly when pressed and have a mild fragrance; examine them closely for bruises or broken skin. A red blush is a sign of variety, not ripeness, but avoid specimens with any traces of green around the stem end, which indicates that they were picked too early and won’t ripen well. White peaches are lower in acidity, so they’re sweeter.
How to Store Peaches
Even firm, unripe peaches are delicate, so handle them carefully to avoid bruising. Ripen hard fruits at room temperature, stem-side down, until the flesh feels soft when pressed and they begin to emit a subtle fragrance. Refrigerate peaches only after they’ve ripened, which can prolong freshness for up to 5 days.
How to Prepare Peaches
If baking, look for freestone peaches, whose pits are easier to remove. To slice, cut through to the pit all the way around the seam, twisting each half to dislodge the stone. A squeeze of fresh lemon juice can prevent sliced fruit from browning. To remove the fuzzy skins before baking, submerge whole fruits in boiling water for 10 seconds, then slip off the skins.
How to Use Peaches
Grilled or roasted peaches make an excellent accompaniment for pork, fish, and chicken.
Real Simple Peach Recipes:
- Grilled-Peach Sundaes
- Irene Burkart’s Peach Surprise
- Roast Chicken With Balsamic Peaches
- Poached Peaches With Vanilla Panna Cotta
- Warm Peaches With Whipped Cream
How To: Slice PeachesLeave the skin on sliced peaches to add both color and texture to recipes.
Fruits and vegetables at their peak right now.
Find out what's in season in your area right now, then locate a farmers' market near you.