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  • Writer's pictureChef Kelly Unger

Peaches, Poetry & Pandowdy

“An apple is an excellent thing - until you have tried a peach.” - George du Maurier, French born author and cartoonist

I couldn't agree more, George! Peaches are so beautiful and delicious that they've inspired poems. If you share my love of peaches, perhaps you will also connect with this poem:

Prunus Persica

There’s a pit in my stomach.

That must make me a peach.

My skin is so soft.

That must make me a peach.

I bruise.

That must make me a peach.

Sometimes I’m hard and bitter.

When you wait to see, I’m as sweet as can be.

That must make me a peach.

I must be a peach.

—Bekka Walker

There is so much to say about this beautiful fruit! We enjoyed the early peach in May and now are in prime peach season. Besides being categorized by Early, Mid and Late season varieties, peaches are also categorized by clingstone (early), semi-freestone (mid) and freestone (mid and late). If you've ever tried to twist a peach off of its pit, you'll understand clingstone versus freestone.

Now let's talk about fuzz and skin, shall we. I like to take a kitchen scrub sponge and, under running water, lightly and gently buff that fuzz away while simultaneously washing my peach. And as far as the skin, there are so many vitamins, antioxidants and minerals in that gorgeous skin, please don't peel it off!

Peaches contain tons of fiber so they help stabilize blood sugar. Peaches are also full of plant-based polyphenols and prebiotics that helps to decrease inflammation and its vitamin C is great for your immune system. Here is some more interesting Health Benefits of Peaches from The Cleveland Clinic .

One of my favorite books about peaches is called just Peachy by Belinda Smith-Sullivan. In it she shares the history of peaches, lists all the peach varietals, provides a list of peach festivals, and of course, peach recipes - everything from sweet to savory. One of my favorite parts of the book talks about and defines the many regional American names for types of "pie". For example, have you heard of Pandowdy? Pandowdy is "fruit on the bottom and rolled pastry on top. Once out of the oven, the pastry is broken into pieces, allowing the edges to absorb the juices." MMM, yum! Versus the Buckle, which is "cake-like batter on the bottom and fruit on the top. As it bakes, the fruit settles toward the bottom and is suspended in the cake.dough." Also yum!

A Cobbler is "fruit on the bottom and biscuit dough in pieces on the top. The rounds of dough resemble cobblestones when baked." Versus a Grunt or Slump which is "like a cobbler but made on the stovetop in a skillet. Fruit on the bottom and spooned biscuit-style dough on top." There's more of course, a Crisp, Pie, Crumble, Brown Betty and Tart. Hungry? You're welcome!

I love a good blueberry peach flavor combination - both sweet and savory - so since blueberries are also plentiful and, if you're trying to cut carbs, pandowdy is a good choice. Try this Peach-Blueberry Pandowdy by Food52

Enjoy peach season!

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