This summer a few of us decided to split a CSA share from work. Every Thursday we have delivered to work a bunch of different vegetables that we take turns sharing. In addition to the vegetable share, I opted to purchase a fruit share by myself. I will say that overall we’ve loved the fruit share, veggie share not so much.
The down side to the fruit share is that we find out the Tuesday or Wednesday of the week that it’s being delivered that we’re getting fruit. I almost had a stroke when I found out that I was going to have 15 lbs of peaches delivered. If you aren’t a huge peach fan (which overall we aren’t), that’s a lot of peaches! Plus, what I’ve typically found with the fruit share is it needs to be used immediately.
Mike did help out the first night by eating a couple of pounds of them himself, but that still left me with a lot of peaches! I decided to challenge myself to find something to do with every piece of the peach. It took a little work, but I think I came up with some pretty good recipes.
First off, even though a couple of my friends love canning peaches I knew that canning wasn’t for me. If you are looking for more information on canning, you can read about it here. I decided to freeze my peaches. A lot of the recipes I found on the interest called for freezing them in a bag with liquid which I really didn’t want to do. We wanted to use our peaches in yogurt, oatmeal and smoothies so I needed to find a recipe that allowed me to freeze them individually. I spent some time on the internet researching different methods, here’s what I decided to do.
- Lemon juice
- Large pot (if you want to remove the skins)
- Bowl of ice water
- Freezer bags
- Cookie sheets
1. Remove the skin from the peaches (unless you prefer to leave them on). While you could use a paring knife to remove the skin, I prefer to do less work. Bring a large pot of water to boiling. Place an X on the bottom of the peach – be careful not to cut to deep into the fruit. Place the peach in the boiling water for about 45 – 60 seconds. Remove the peach and place in ice water. I typically do about 5 – 6 peaches at a time. This should allow you to grasp the skin by your X and peel off easily.
2. Cut your peaches. While most of the methods will tell you to cut your peach in half and pull it off the seed, I found that almost impossible to do. I’ve found the easiest way to get the peach off was to actually slice it while still on the pit. Slice your peach from top to bottom in four equal quarters. At this point make an additional slice in one of the quarters (halving the quarter) and gently pull the slice towards you when your paring knife is still down by the pit. Continue to do this until you only have one slice left on the peach, gently pull the pit off to separate the two. It took a little practice but I found this to go fairly quickly.
3. Rinse peach slices under water and place into a bowl with a lemon/water solution for a minute or two. I didn’t really measure but I think typically you could do one part lemon juice to four parts water. I used Real Lemon from a bottle but fresh lemons would work too. This solution will keep your peaches from browing.
4. Place peach slices on a prepared cookie sheet ( I covered mine with tin foil) and place in the freezer for an hour or two. Make sure the peaches aren’t touching each other otherwise they will freeze together.
5. Once they are completely frozen, package them in freezer bags. I added about a peach or two per bag for easy access. After bagging them in smaller bags I then added about 5 of the smaller bags to a larger storage bag. I found multiple layers help to keep the items fresher.
6. Your peaches are now ready for a long winter of yummy goodness! Just remove however many peaches you need for yogurt or smoothies!
I’ll be posting later what I did with the peels and pits as I didn’t let those go to waste!