Ain’t no season like stone fruit season
By Roshni Riar, Staff Writer
August in the Lower Mainland is quite possibly my favourite time of year. The weather’s usually great, the fall semester still seems far away, and stone fruits are some of the most delicious fruits that come into season.
Year after year, I buy loads of white peaches and green plums in a hungry frenzy, wondering what else I can do with them besides just washing and eating—which, to be fair, is probably the best way to enjoy them. If you’re wondering the same thing, then this list of some of my favourite uses for stone fruits should help coax you into a fun day of kitchen experimentation.
Grilled White Peaches
This recipe is simple, yet so delicious. All you need is:
4 white peaches, pitted and cut in half
¼ cup brown sugar or maple syrup
A grill pan or barbeque
I recommend patting your peaches dry once they’ve been cut in half to remove any excess moisture. Heat your grill pan or barbeque and sprinkle either brown sugar or maple syrup all over the cut side of the peaches. Make sure the entire face of the peach is covered—if you’re using brown sugar, rub it in so it doesn’t fall off.
Once your cooking surface is at a high heat, press the peaches cut side down, allowing the sugar or syrup to caramelize and begin to create grill marks. You don’t have to heat the peach all the way through, although you can if you would like. Flip gently and remove from heat once you’ve reached your desired level of caramelization and colour.
These peaches are great with a scoop of vanilla ice cream as well as tossed into a salad or a bowl of yogurt. They’re versatile and, more importantly, a more fun way to eat a white peach.
Green Plum Salad
This salad is great on its own or as a side. You’ll need:
10 green plums, pitted and quartered
6 radishes, peeled and sliced
1 mini watermelon, cubed
½ cup mint, finely chopped
½ cup toasted pecans, roughly chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp honey
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
This recipe couldn’t be any easier, I swear. Simply place all your fruit and vegetable into a large bowl and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Mix wet ingredients together and drizzle over the contents of the bowl, tossing to coat well. Pile your salad high in a big bowl and enjoy!
You can add some additional fruits, spices, or nuts depending on your preference. A touch of crumbled feta is excellent if you want a little bit of cheese and extra salt.
Concord Grape Tarts
Okay, this one’s not a stone fruit, but it’s still worth including on your summer fruit recipe list. This recipe might seem strange, but it’s worth a try. What you’ll need is:
1 package of mini tart shells
4 cups of concord grapes
½ cup white sugar
2 tbsp minute tapioca
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 cup dried cherries
Remove the skins from your grapes by squeezing the grapes with your fingers. Once the skins are removed, place the grapes, sugar, and lemon juice into a pot and bring to a boil, using a fork to mash and break down the grapes as they cook. Let boil on medium high heat for five minutes and then add the cherries, mixing well. Reduce heat and let simmer for an additional three minutes. Take off heat, mix in tapioca, and place into fridge for a minimum of two hours up to overnight to firm up.
When you’re ready to bake, simply prepare your mini tart shells on a bake tray and fill each shell with your concord grape filling. Bake according to the mini tart’s package instructions or at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 to 45 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for an hour.