Summer Peaches

Nothing says summer like fresh peaches.  A delicious, ripe, juicy peach is hard to beat. Peaches are the perfect snack food since they are portable. They are also very nutritious. One medium peach contains 2 grams of fiber, Vitamin C and Vitamin A.
Did you know that nectarines are a type of peach that has a smooth skin without fuzz? Peaches and nectarines are available year round, but taste the best and are less expensive during the summer.

Types
  • Freestone — the flesh of the peach does not stick to the pit (seed in the middle), so it is easy to remove the pit by hand. These varieties are usually sold fresh.
  • Clingstone — the flesh of these peaches “clings” or sticks to the pit. These varieties are usually used for home canning.
  • Freestone and clingstone are the most common types of peaches but white peaches, donut peaches and other varieties may also be available at your local farmers’ market.
  • You can buy frozen or canned peaches all year long. When selecting canned peaches look for those that are labeled “packed in its own juice,” “lite,” or “no sugar added.” These are healthier choices than cans served in heavy sugar syrup.

Selection & Storage
Select peaches that have fuzzy, firm skin with no bruises or brown spots. Store unripe peaches in a paper bag to ripen. When ripe, store at room temperature and eat within a few days.

Serving Ideas
  • Add fresh or frozen peaches into a blender with some low-fat yogurt (or milk), bananas, and ice. Then blend away for a delicious smoothie.
  • Drop fresh or frozen peaches in the bottom of a glass before pouring water on top. This slightly fruity water is delicious.
  • Peach slices are a great on top of hot or cold cereals, pancakes and waffles, low-fat yogurt or cottage cheese.
  • Add peaches to a fruit salad.
  • Make a peach parfait by layering yogurt, peaches and topping off with unsweetened cereal.

Peach Recipes
Check out your local farmers’ market and see what types of peaches you can try this summer.

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© Eat Smart, Be Fit Maryland!Maira Gall