Posts Tagged by summer
|July 5, 2017||Filled under Frozen Treats|
If you haven’t had a fresh Georgia peach, right off the tree, you’re missing out. Wait…if you haven’t had peach ice cream made from fresh peaches right off the tree, you’re really missing out!
I have an affinity for almost anything peach. Every year we make the pilgrimage to peach country here in Georgia and visit Dickey Farms, not only for their beautiful peaches, syrups and other goodies, but for the peach ice cream.
Aside from just eating them fresh, we typically make the same three or four recipes each time we bring home a case of peaches. The first one is this absolutely fabulous Peach Cobbler or some variation like Peach Blackberry Cobbler, next is a creamy, delicious Peach Soup, and third, we put them up in jars so we’ll have them during the winter. This peach season, however, we’re in the middle of a kitchen renovation that’s taking way too long. We have no stove, sink, microwave, or even counters for that matter.
So, none of the baked goodies were happening this year, nor was any sort of canning. Craving the taste of Dickey Farms peach ice cream, I researched a bunch of ice cream recipes that didn’t require that I cook the base. While a custard-based ice cream has its merits, this simple no-cook peach ice cream base creates the greatest bowl of heaven and I’d say it rivals Dickey Farms.
It all starts with the peaches…4-5 cups (6-ish peaches.) Then simply add brown and white sugars, vanilla and almond extract, a pinch of salt and some lemon juice.
Stir it together and let the peaches macerate a bit. Once the sugars have dissolved, break down the peaches with an immersion blender, regular blender or food processor. Leave some chunks.
Add heavy cream, stir and freeze. I have an old fashioned crank machine and one with a motor, but I got a super simple electric ice cream machine for Christmas and I love, love, love it! Y’all, there are only two options on this thing…ON or OFF. Right up my alley!
Transfer the ice cream to a container, pop it in the freezer for a couple more hours, and you’re good to go!
Homemade Peach Ice Cream
4-5 cups peaches, peeled and rough diced
1 cup brown sugar, light or dark
3/4 c. granulated sugar (less if your peaches are extra sweet)
juice of half a lemon
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon almond extract
pinch of salt
2 cups heavy cream (half & half is ok)
- In a bowl, combine the peaches, sugars, lemon juice and extracts. Mix well and set aside to macerate.
- When the sugars are dissolved (at least 20 minutes), use an immersion blender to break down the peaches a little, leave some chunks. You can also use a regular blender, food processor or even a potato masher. Pour in the heavy cream and mix by hand to combine.
- Chill for at least a couple of hours, overnight is better.
- Use your ice cream machine according to its instructions to churned the mixture.
- When it’s finished, put it into a freezer-safe container and freeze for a couple more hours before serving.
Makes about 1 1/2 quarts.
Before the final freeze (step 5), fold in pieces of piece crust or shortbread cookies. Tastes like the best peach cobbler you’ve ever had!
For a super healthy, non-dairy version, simple blend equal parts partially frozen chopped peaches, a little lemon juice and frozen bananas. Fold in a few blueberries or chopped strawberries, if you like. I will never turn my nose up at this. It’s creamy and tastes so decadent.
|July 8, 2016||Filled under Healthy|
Nothing says summer like vibrant, refreshing watermelon: Outrageously colorful, yielding and sweet at the center and crisper and mild towards the rind, and packed with cooling, hydrating juice.
It’s hard to beat wedges of chilled melon fresh from the fridge, but watermelon’s generous size and seasonal abundance are compelling reasons to get creative with it. Experimenting with bold flavor combinations and an expanded roster of techniques and recipes can transform your summer eating.
Here are the basics on choosing and using watermelon, followed by a selection of creative recipes to expand your summer repertoire.
- Choose melons with deeply colored, unblemished skin. It’s fine if one side is paler than the rest; this indicates the part of the melon that rested on the ground while it was ripening on the vine.
- A fresh, lightly sweet aroma is a sign of ripe watermelon. When tapped, it should sound taut and hollow if ripe.
- Seedless varieties are popular in today’s market, but seeds are so easy to remove that you should let ripeness be your guide when selecting a melon.
- If you purchase a piece of a cut watermelon, look for firm, solid flesh with deep color and no cracks.
- Before storing or cutting whole watermelon, rinse the exterior well under cold running water.
- Whole watermelon will keep at room temperature 7 to 10 days. Once cut, watermelon is best eaten as soon as possible but can be refrigerated for 2 to 3 days.
- Watermelons flavor goes particularly well with lime, mint, basil, red onion, fresh cheeses, chiles, strawberries and neutral spirits such as vodka and light rum.
- Use watermelon in just about any recipe you would cantaloupe or honeydew, or try substituting it for other recipe with high-water vegetables like cucumber or tomatoes.
Watermelon consists of an awesome 90 percent water, so it’s no surprise that it makes an ideal base for drinks. Refreshing Watermelon Agua Fresca is light and delicious and packs pure summer flavor. Incredibly popular, gorgeously hued Watermelon Lemonade is terrific for a crowd; you can even make it do service through cocktail hour by adding a shot of vodka to each glass. And you can enjoy two of summer’s favorite fruits in these Strawberry Watermelon Coolers, packed with flavor and lightened by lots of ice and sparkling water.
Sides and Salads
Mix up your grilling routine with Grilled Watermelon with Olive Oil and Sea Salt; heat caramelizes the outside of the melon, resulting in a particularly complex flavor heightened by a hit of coarse salt. It makes a surprising side dish for spicy meats, as does Watermelon and Arugula Salad, both which are filled with fabulous seasonal flavors. Either salad makes an ideal dish for picnics or potlucks.
Watermelon shares the stage with a favorite summer catch, halibut, in Halibut with Watermelon Salsa, a brilliant recipe that uses watermelon both as a marinade and as a topping. Seafood is also the star in Shrimp, Watermelon and Goat Cheese Salad, an easy choice for cookouts. (This recipe also works wonderfully with boneless skinless chicken breast.) And healthful, awesomely colorful Black Bean, Corn and Watermelon Salsa will turn any simple grilled item from tofu to burgers to steaks into a celebration of watermelon.
Snacks and Desserts
Watermelon is the key to a bevy of satisfying, almost effortless summer treats. Watermelon Granita is one of the easiest, iciest refreshers around, perfect for an intermezzo between courses or as a light dessert. Grape and Watermelon Freezer Pops are a fabulous alternative to commercial popsicles and low in added sweetener.
|April 18, 2016||Filled under Adventure, Travel|
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|August 6, 2014||Filled under Giveaways, Reviews/Giveaways|
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