Ingredient of the week: Peaches
Buttermilk peach pie will impress any guest, but peaches aren’t just for pie anymore. Thierry and Tom love dishes like peach salad and peach gratin with sauvignon champagne. (Jillian Raftery/Mynorthwest.com)
Peaches are the sexiest food in the store.
“When you touch it it feels good, it looks pretty, it smells delicious. Peaches have – when they’re ripe – that great syrupy juice about them,” says chef Tom Douglas.
“There is nothing more beautiful than a peach that’s perfectly ripe,” says chef Thierry Rautureau.
Katie O loves to use the many varieties of Pacific Northwest fruit to make buttermilk peach pie in the summer.
“It’s an unstoppable pie. It is so good. Because what happens with the buttermilk and the syrup from the peaches is that it makes this custard, so you have this warm custard, you have the warm peaches and really flaky crust,” says Katie.
When discussing their favorite recipes, the Seattle Kitchen Show staff emphasized that peaches don’t just belong in pies. Tom loves peach crepes, while Thierry says he loves to can peaches and make peach gratin or salad.
Thierry makes his peach salads with freshly sliced cold peaches and creme fraiche as a dessert.
“The idea of the sour and the peach – the very ripe peach is so delicous to me. I think it’s very very good,” says Thierry.
Pairing peaches with green beans and crab meat can make for an excellent and unexpected summer dish.
“Easy to make, you know, a little bit of rice vinegar and olive oil – toss the whole haricots verts, peach salad together, a little chopped shallots, and then you put the crab right on top of that,” says Thierry.
Katie loves Tom’s peach salad with chorizo, which is more traditional.
“That’s a classic savory salad. I pair them [peaches] with arugula or some sort of bitter greens so you have that bitter-sweet thing going on with the peach. And then I added salt, lime zest, and then we did those crispy little bits of Spanish chorizo,” says Tom.
Tom suggests the authentic dried, Spanish chorizo that you can find at local markets. Taking the grease from the sausage works well in the salad’s vinaigrette dressing – use it warm, or the fat will solidify.
If peaches are off-season, Tom suggests avocado and grapefruit in the salad.