The star attraction at the farmer’s market this weekend should have been the appearance of the first strawberries. They were there, jewel-bright and aromatic and further cementing my opinion that some produce tastes so much better in season that it’s a crime to eat it otherwise. Instead, though, people crowded around the apple stand, oohing and ahhing over an enormous pile of peaches.
“They’re from our friend’s orchard in South Carolina,” the apple lady explained. The peaches were sitting in the sun and the smell wafted throughout the market. Everyone milled about and stocked up, feeling a bit drunk on such a summery scent when we’re still getting used to spring.
But like most forms of intoxication, being peach-drunk at the market comes at a price the morning after. For me, I wandered into the kitchen the next day and was struck with the peach-hangover realization that I had about a bushel of perfectly ripe fruit that would not get eaten before going bad without some serious effort.
And so it’s been high peach alert at the Yellow House this week. It’s not a particularly hard burden to bear, especially when you taste these peaches. I honestly can’t remember the last time I had a fresh peach, and I could not think of a better way to become reacquainted with one. I was under the impression that peaches had yellow flesh, but these ones are stunners, greeting the lucky person to cut one open with a sunrise of orange-red that fades, like a watercolor wash, from the skin to the pit. They are also juicy enough that they belong in the category of Foods to Be Eaten Without Straying Far From the Sink.
We’ve had peaches for every meal: peaches by themselves as snacks, peach-rhubarb galettes for dessert and peach pizza (really! so good with goat cheese). One morning, I suppose especially bleary-eyed, I was so anxious to replicate the flavor of peach cobbler with a crumbly topping that I didn’t even realize what I was doing: putting oats on top of…oatmeal. Fortunately, it turned out well enough that it has helped to alleviate the peach burden (and what a burden it is) a few mornings since.
Peach crumble oatmeal
You will need
- 1 ripe peach, sliced
1/4 cup steel cut oats
4 tablespoons rolled oats
1 tablespoon softened, unsalted butter
2 tablespoons brown sugar
Cinnamon to taste
Milk or cream to top oatmeal
- Prepare steel cut oats as directed. While cooking, stir together rolled oats, butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon with a fork until it forms a crumbly topping. In final minutes of oatmeal cooking, add in some of the sliced peach–this gives it some nice sweetness and a velvety texture.
Top the oatmeal with crumble topping and more peach. Serves 1.