Peaches, like apricots, have a fuzzy, velvety skin, which varies on the spectrum between red and pale yellow. The interior flesh can also vary between white, yellow and red. As with most stone fruits, peaches can either have a freestone, one which easily comes away from the flesh, or a clingstone, one which is more difficult to remove.
Peaches are in season between August to May, but their peak periods are between November and March. Some well-known peach varieties are ‘Spring Lady’, ‘Sweet Scarlet’, ‘Red Jenni’, ‘Desert Red’ and ‘Flamecrest’. When selecting peaches, look for those that are firm and plump with a good colouring. Avoid any that are green, hard and do not yield to gentle pressure.
It is best to use peaches within two to three days, letting them ripen at room temperature and then refrigerating them in an unsealed plastic bag. Peaches can be eaten fresh or served with ice cream, in salads, sauces, cakes or with meats. They are a versatile fruit and can be stewed, poached, baked or grilled.
You can find peaches at the Showground Farmers’ Market at The Food Forest, Eko Fresh Fruits, B&A Andonopoulos, Virgara’s Garden, McLaren Vale Orchards & Miss Merbein, Ashbourne Valley Orchards and Cooinda Proprietors stalls.