When peaches hit the farmers markets, you’ll know it: Their sweet scent dominates for several weeks during the summer and there will be crowds picking through crates of peaches to find the perfect specimens. Once you’ve scored a few of these stone fruit royalties, add them to salsas, ice cream, smoothies or pie. Make the best jam you’ve had in recent memory. You can even pickle that.
But some of those recipes are a little more involved than you might like right now. Here’s a selection of breezier ones, fit for a weeknight.
Grilled Peaches With Basil Mascarpone, above. The name is basically the recipe: Grill some peaches (not too ripe, or they’ll disintegrate), then serve with creamy mascarpone mixed with thinly sliced basil. Easy but sophisticated.
Peach and Pancetta Risotto. Peaches and cured meat are a classic pairing for a reason: The sweet softness of the fruit is a perfect foil for the salty chew of something meaty — in this case, pancetta. The dish pairs well with a dry Riesling, if you’re into that.
Peach Quesadillas. Sweet, ripe fruit also takes well to slightly greasy pork sausage (fresh chorizo would be nice, too). Use a sharp cheddar cheese or a few pinches of soft goat cheese. Serve with sugar snap peas or a light salad, or cut into triangles and use them as appetizers. (In that case, we’d pair them with a citrusy drink — margarita, anyone?)
Baked Chicken Breasts With Peaches. A layer of spices and sliced peaches makes boneless, skinless chicken breast halves bake up to something moist and flavorful.
Peach and Brown Sugar Muffins. Not too sweet and lightly spiced, these nuggets let the peaches do the talking. You’ll also notice an optional peach butter, which perhaps shouldn’t be so optional after all, as it’s a clever way to use up bits of leftover chopped peaches.
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