917-604-7591 [email protected]

I just posted this week’s TBT recipe: Peach Sangria. It came from this lovely book, part of the Savor the South Series for the University of North Carolina. When I posted three years ago, we were just completing our new kitchen at Cooking by the Book:

Our kitchen is still brimming with students enjoying teambuilding fun. We go for fresh and local ingredients of course. With the end of August, we are at peak season for peaches and this book is a delight for enjoying every sticky taste!

Here’s the review:

And we begin with a ringer, Peaches. Why a ringer? Well, author Kelly Alexander was born in Georgia, grew up in Georgia and was immersed in Georgia peach culture. Yes, the peaches from Georgia are famous, perhaps because of the heat and humidity, perhaps the red soil, surely for the care people take of their orchards and abundant fruit dangling from each branch.

Peaches is a slim volume, barely 80 pages, but it is as rich as a ripe peach. There are five chapters:

  • Desserts
  • Breakfast
  • Appetizers, Salads and Mains
  • Condiments
  • Drinks

Now I love all the chapters but it is the beginning and the end that make me smile, the desserts and the drinks. Here are some reasons why:

The Best Peach Ice Cream

Perfect Peach Pie

Peach Crème Brûlée

Sour Cream Peach Cake

Peach Sangria

Frozen White Peach Margarita

Kelly’s love affair with peaches began when, as a kid, she first tasted real peach ice cream. Not some smooth peach-colored homogenous affair, but real peach ice cream — yellow custard with chunks of peach waiting to punctuate each bite.

You’ll find sophistication in that Peach Sangria, too. How often do you make sangria by just cutting up the fruit, adding some wine and perhaps a shot of brandy? Well, here the peaches and simple syrup are put in a blender to form a thick base. Then the wine and that brandy are added but also healthy doses of orange and pineapple juice. Pineapple and peaches? You’ll make this by the pitcher.

Those other chapters have great Southern tradition in them too. Recipes including:

Spiced Peach Muffins with allspice, cardamom and cinnamon

Peach Tempura

Peach-Glazed Ham

Pickled Peaches

Mango-Peach Salsa

I know, some years you just get a tad angry at the peaches. They are hard to find unbruised and they can be stone-hard one day and mushy the next. Kelly gives hints for proper care in buying and storing peaches. What’s your option here? Nectarines? Peaches are what nectarines wish they could be. Nothing, nothing can match a perfect peach. Take some time, take some care, and take one of these peachy recipes.