Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Fresh Peaches and Plums from Chile Brighten Gray Winter Days

With fresh peaches and plums from Chile currently in ample supply, now is the time to brighten gray winter days with a sweet, colorful and nutritious homemade dessert.

Our ROASTED CHILEAN PEACHES & PLUMS with COOKIE CRUMBLE recipe highlights two of Chile’s “summer fresh” winter fruits. Roasted peaches and plums are central to this recipe and provide both sweetness and tartness that tantalize the tongue. The crumbled cookie topping provides a satisfying crunchy counterpart to the tender roasted fruit. And the deep, rich colors of this luscious dessert are a vivid complement to the muted browns and grays of the winter months.

Chile is the #1 exporter of fresh fruit from the Southern Hemisphere, and winter peaches and plums are a principle export from Chile. Most Chilean fresh peaches that are sold in U.S. markets are freestone, and de-fuzzed by the grower making them easier to cook with and ideal for snacking.

The Chilean Fresh Fruit Association suggests consumers select peaches that are colorful and free of bruises and let them ripen at room temperature for a day or so until they become softer. Fresh plums, being naturally juicier than other stone fruits, are at their ideal ripeness when they give slightly under a light touch. Typically eaten out of hand, they’re a wonderful addition to this crumble dessert, as well as in cobblers, compotes, and tarts.


6 Amaretti Italian or oatmeal cookies, crumbled
1/4 cup toasted nuts, chopped
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup chilled butter, cubed
Pinch of salt

2 fresh Chilean peaches & 3 fresh Chilean plums, halved, pits removed

Preheat oven to 400°.

In a food processor, combine all crumble ingredients. Pulse until crumble is chunky and mixed well.

Place fruit in a buttered medium sized roasting pan. Sprinkle crumble on top. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes. Fruit should be tender and juicy when pierced.

Serve warm with ice cream if desired.

Makes 8 servings.

Nutrients per serving: calories 160, fat 10 gms, calories from fat 90, saturated fat 5 gms, cholesterol 18 mg, sodium 93 mg, dietary fiber 1 gm, protein 2 gms

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