Last year I wrote about what has become one of my favorite summer field trips: picking peaches at Bennett Orchards in Delaware. The orchard is on our way home from Ocean City when we take the Delaware route, so we stopped in again this year after our early August vacation.
Field trip actually isn’t the right term to describe peach picking. It’s more like a pleasant stopover or an errand. That’s because peach picking is fast. Five of us – and two people didn’t do much work – picked 27 pounds of peaches, an entire box, in five minutes. Really. My mom timed it. And Kenny and I took home more of the haul than anyone else.
I love the idea of picking lots of fruit at once, but it also kind of stresses me out. A few summers ago I bought a 25-pound box of tomatoes for canning, then waited an entire week to go to Bed Bath & Beyond and buy the stupid cans. The tomatoes rotted. Not one was useable.
I vowed then that I would never again let so much good food, lovingly cared for and picked by local farmers no less, end up in the trash.
Luckily, the nice people at Bennett Orchards provide a full list of peach recipes, mostly breads, pies, cobblers, and these peach muffins, which I quickly whipped together one weekday morning last week.
Adapted from Bennett Orchards
I used whole wheat flours in this recipe, which definitely creates a more dense muffin. If you like lighter muffins, substitute all-purpose flour.
Because of the moist peaches – I used Glowingstar freestone yellow peaches – these muffins have pockets of fruit that are extremely soft and sticky. Keep napkins close by!
And don’t worry if you add some ingredients out of order. I did this myself with my first batch. When I tasted the batter before scooping it into the muffin cups, it was terrible, like eating raw bread dough. Then I realized it – I forgot the sugar. So I stirred it in after I had already folded in the peaches. This probably changed the texture of the muffin, but I’ve never been a very exact baker anyway. They still tasted sweet and fruity to me.
1 cup white whole wheat flour
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
½ cup sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ginger
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¾ cup soy milk
1 large egg
¼ cup butter, melted
2 large peaches, peeled and diced (save the juice)
In a large bowl, combine the flours, sugar, baking powder, salt, ginger, and cinnamon; set aside. In a smaller bowl, stir together the soy milk and egg, then slowly whisk in the melted butter. Move your whisk fast – you don’t want to cook the eggs.
Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, and stir together until just combined. Fold in the diced peaches and juice.
Line a muffin pan with 12 cupcake liners. Scoop the batter into the cups. (My muffins barely rose – possibly because I added the sugar so late – so I filled my muffin cups to the very top.) Bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes.
Makes 17 small muffins.
Do you go fruit picking in the summer? Other than canning, how do you use up your fruit?