I’m living in a kind of peach frenzy.
Peaches and ricotta for breakfast. Baked peaches blanketed with pastry cream. Peach sorbetto. Peach tart in a sweet cookie crust.
Pondering how long my supplies will last, I just spoke on the phone to the friendly clerk at Bechtold’s Orchard in Bucks County, PA. She said peaches will be available for about one more week. O-N-E week? Sadly, the days of peaches dwindle down to a precious few.
Like a squirrel frantically stashing nuts for the bleak days to come, I’m stockpiling peaches in my freezer. It’s easy enough to do. Submerge the ripe but firm peaches in a pot of boiling water for 30 to 60 seconds. Transfer them with a slotted spoon to a big bowl of ice water.
Start peeling with a sharp paring knife at the stem end and the skin slips off as easily as a satin robe gliding off the shoulder of a 1930s glamour queen. Halve or quarter the peaches and lay them on a tray lined with plastic wrap. Place in the freezer for a day and then pack the frozen peaches into a resealable plastic freezer bag or plastic freezer container.
And, while you still have the chance, you can bake a homey Italian peach tart with the following recipe. It’s sweetened with fruit preserves to intensify the flavor of the fresh fruit filling. Sometimes I replace half the preserves with ginger-peach chutney from Tait Farm Foods in Centre Hall, PA. It makes a sweet, slightly hot filling that’s bliss.