Simply Delicious: Ontario peaches

Weather conditions really took a bite out of peaches last year. Although hail storms affected some crops this season, things are looking a lot better. In fact, you could say things are looking ‘peachy’ compared to last year. Susan Hay enlists the help of celebrity chef and restaurateur Mark McEwan, to show you how to enjoy Ontario peaches this season.

Here’s the recipe to the peach cocktail they made:

Fabbrica’s Peach Cocktail

Recipe by: Mark McEwan

1/2 Fresh Peach

3/4oz. Rosemary syrup

Juice of half a lemon

1.5oz. Crown Royal

Garnish- 3 thin slices of fresh peach and 1 stem of rosemary

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In a shaker, muddle the peach with the rosemary syrup

Add ice to the shaker and pour in the Crown Royal and the juice from the lemon

Shake all ingredients

Strain over ice and add garnish

They’re here! Succulent, Ontario peaches.

There are two general types of peaches: freestone and cling stone.  The clingstone varieties have pits that cling to the flesh, while the pits of freestone peaches are easily removed from the peach. Peaches are a great source of Vitamins A and C.

We went to Edgewood Farms in Jordan Station, to find perfect peaches. We met Rob Troup, the owner of the farm, whose family has been farming since the 1800’s.

The frost last season gave a lot of peach farmers a hard time, Troup said, adding his farm lost 50% of their blossoms.

This year there was a hail storm that left some marks on the fruit. It reduced the volume of peaches but things are a lot brighter. Troup says there’s been good growing weather.

“This year, there’s a lot of adequate moisture to keep the trees growing. The peaches just love that, and the sun, it makes them the sweetest they can be,” he said.

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Peach season normally starts around the end of June, and lasts until the end of September.

There’s really an art to finding and picking the right peach, Troup said. Pickers should look for a defined ‘sutra line,’ which is the line around the peach.  Another thing to look for is the background colour: It should more yellow than green.


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