Romi London: August is a fishing month | Health, medicine and fitness
Does anything say “August” more than eating a peach over the sink with the juice running down your arm? August is the national fishing month and the fishing season generally runs from late June to August, although harvest times are different in different parts of the country. The main peach-producing states in the United States are California, South Carolina, Georgia and New Jersey.
Peaches are a good source of vitamin C and fiber. An average peach contains only 60 calories, making it a great low-calorie snack.
Choose peaches that are firm but have a bit of flexibility when pressed lightly. They can be cured in a brown paper bag at room temperature. Once ripe, store in the refrigerator and use within 5 days or slice and store in the freezer for up to 6 months.
Peaches are classified as hanging stones or ashlars depending on whether the flesh adheres to the stone. Stone peaches are better to eat, while hanging stones are preferred for canning and processing. The flesh of the peach varies from white to dark yellow, depending on the variety of peach. There are over 300 varieties of peach grown in the United States, including Red Beauty, Elegant Lady, Early Elberta, and many more.
If you’re wondering what’s the difference between peaches and nectarines, look no further – they’re actually the same species! A single genetic mutation is responsible for the fact that peaches have fuzzy skin and nectarines have smooth skin.
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If not eaten directly from the fruit bowl, peaches are often baked in cobblers and pies, but there are plenty of other ways to dress a peach. They are delicious grilled, mixed in a smoothie, stuffed, baked, added to salads, salsas or used as a topping for pancakes or yogurt. Peaches go well with other seasonal fruits like cherries, blueberries and raspberries.
Here are some peach recipes to get you started this fishing season. The first is a lighter peach crumble that uses very little sugar and enhances the sweetness of the peaches with vanilla extract. The second is a summer salad with the perfect balance of sweet and savory flavors.
Juicy peach crumble
- 6 peaches, sliced
- ¼ cup of orange juice
- 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 1 cup old-fashioned oatmeal
- ¼ cup whole wheat flour
- ⅓ cup of brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3 tablespoons of softened butter
Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8 x 8-inch baking dish with cooking spray. In a bowl, combine the peaches, orange juice and vanilla. Place the fruit mixture in the baking dish. In another bowl, combine the oatmeal, flour, brown sugar and cinnamon. Cut the butter into the mixture until well blended. Sprinkle the oat mixture over the fruit mixture. Bake 45 minutes or until lightly browned and bubbly.
Per serving (1 / 8th dish): Calories 175, Fat 7 g, Saturated fat 3 g, Sodium 35 mg, Carbohydrates 30 mg, Fiber 3 g, Protein 3 g
Hearty arugula, quinoa and peach salad
- 1 tablespoon of sherry vinegar
- 2 teaspoons of olive oil
- ⅛ teaspoon of kosher salt
- ⅛ teaspoon of black pepper
- 1 cup of arugula
- ¾ cup of precooked quinoa
- ¼ avocado, sliced
- ⅓ cup of sliced peaches
- 2 tablespoons of chopped walnuts
- 2 teaspoons of crumbled feta cheese
Directions: Combine vinegar, oil, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Place arugula in a medium bowl. Arrange the quinoa, avocado and peaches evenly around the bowl. Pour dressing over salad, then sprinkle nuts and cheese evenly on top. (Recipe adapted from cookinglight.com)
Nutritional values: Calories 440, Fat 28 g, Saturated fat 4 g, Sodium 315 mg, Carbohydrates 40 g, Fiber 8 g, Protein 11 g
Romi Londre is a dietitian at the Mayo Clinic Health System in La Crosse