Originally published in the Greenwood Daily Journal Saturday June 25, 2011
One of my favorite things about summer is all of the bountiful fruits and vegetables that are available at local stores and farmers markets. I know I have mentioned this before but I buy a majority of my fresh produce from local vendors in the warmer months. I can’t help it! It’s just there calling to me.
When I go to the market early on a Saturday morning and I see a vendor with a long line I have to go investigate. Word of mouth can sell almost anything at a produce stand so if I see people willing to wait in line for 15 minutes just to buy sweet corn then it must be good.
This is how I came to discover my favorite peach vendor. I don’t know what this farm does to produce the sweetest peaches I have ever had but it works. Firm flesh, long shelf life, juicy and perfect. I will usually buy from them 4 or 5 times in a season to make sure I get enough for cobblers, preserves, grilling and other favorites. My youngest son and I just like to eat them like an apple. Recently,I made a burger that incorporates the peach in the meat mixture as well as uses them in a tangy barbecue sauce to serve on the side.
Like many seasonal foods there are many different uses for the peach. Have you ever tried to grill halved peaches? You would be surprised at how good half of a grilled peach with a scoop of homemade vanilla ice cream can be. Peaches on a pizza with a smoky cheese and bacon? Versatility is key here. I can only make so many cobblers but if I want to enjoy one of my favorite summer fruits often then I have to get inventive! I also making a peach puree with a touch of honey or sugar to add to my iced tea. It’s like summer in a glass.
So I have had quite a dilemma this summer in the varying times both of my children wake up. My youngest wakes up bright and early 3 days a week when he has swimming but on his of days I am lucky if he is up by 10 a.m. My youngest is always, without fail, awake by 7:30. He is my little alarm clock and always has been. That’s great during the school year but in the summer feeding them breakfast at 2 different times can be a real drag. I have not graduated to the level of the mother that lets her kids forage for their own meals yet. I don’t know if I will ever get there.
What I have decided is that I need to have something on hand for each of them to grab and eat at their chosen breakfast time. That way I don’t feel like I am in the kitchen so much. Some mornings I feel like I no sooner get breakfast cleaned up that one asks about lunch! I know that some of you who are home with your kids right now know what I mean.
So to combat their early morning cravings I keep a few dishes on hand and at the ready. Of course baked oatmeal is a family favorite as well as fruit salads and granola. We eat a lot of this during the school year so I like to shake it up a bit and try new things. This is where the peach comes in.
I have a base muffin recipe that I use and I add in what is in season or what I have on hand. Right now I have a bounty of peaches so I used those. This is a hearty morning muffin that is healthy and not one you would have to worry has fillers and artificial flavors. I do not add sugar to the batter but if you want it to have a sweeter taste you can add 2 tablespoons of brown sugar. It all depends on how ripe your peaches are. The more ripe the better here.
Whether you eat this with a little yogurt or as a snack in the morning, this muffins is filling, healthy and has a little bit of summer in every bite.
So next time you are at the farmers market grab something new. Maybe a basket of peaches will be calling to you like they always do to me. Grill them, saute, add to a fruit salad or on a pizza. The fresh taste of summer can be yours!
Morning Glory Muffins
1 Cup all-purpose flour
3/4 C whole wheat flour
2 TB milled flax seed
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp salt
2 fresh very ripe peaches with peel ON, chopped
1 TB honey
1 egg beaten
1/2 cup plus 1TB milk
1/4 C vegetable or canola oil
*1/3 C brown sugar if you like a sweeter muffin or your peaches are not ripe*
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
To a muffin pan add liners or spray with a non-stick spray.
In a large bowl combine flours, flax meal, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Make a well in the center.
In a separate bowl add the peaches and honey. Mash both them add the milk, oil and egg. When incorporated add to the well in the bowl of dry mix. Lightly stir until moistened (batter will be lumpy).
Spoon batter in to muffin cups and bake for 18-20 minutes until golden.
|I like to serve these muffins with a nice cheese omelet to start the day off right!|