She's A Peach!

After California, the state of South Carolina is the second largest producer of peaches and so consequently peaches can claim their rightful place as the state fruit. And if you've driven down Interstate 85 near Gaffney, SC you've most likely seen this water tank that often gets mistaken for my a huge butt.

In 2006, the SC Department of Agriculture reported that the peach industry brought in an estimated $40 million to the state and I'm quite sure the figures have soared even higher in more recent years. Just a few weeks ago, I forked over 6 of my hard earned dollars for a small basket of nearly ripe peaches from McLeod Farms in McBee, SC.
I figured since the town Constable was nice enough to not pull me over for speeding this time and make me pay a hefty fine, it was the least I could do.

There was a mad rush of people in the store and if I'd had more time, I would have enjoyed perusing the aisle of all things peaches ~ jams and jellies, salsas, freshly baked breads ~ but I was pressed for time and it's probably a good thing or else they'd have gotten more of my money. When I bought the peaches, they still needed a few days to ripen so I left them out on the counter until I decided exactly what to do with them. If you need them to ripen sooner, place them in a brown paper bag, close the bag, and lay it on the counter. They will ripen almost overnight because of the gases they emit.

And then it hit me....why not make something totally South Carolinian with my South Carolinian peaches? I rummaged through my recipe collection and finally found exactly what I was looking for ~ a recipe written by my friend Peggy Waller, the Inn at Merridun bed and breakfast owner from Union, South Carolina.

Carolina Peach Soup is quick, easy, and perfect on these hot and humid summer days. It's perfect as a first course as part of a brunch or light lunch and I also enjoy it for breakfast with a slice of freshly baked quick bread. And what the heck...have some for dessert too because it's just so good! Enjoy the recipe and, Peggy if you're reading, drop me a line because I want to come visit you very soon!



* Exported from MasterCook *

Carolina Peach Soup

Recipe By :Peggy Waller
Serving Size : 6 Preparation Time :0:00
Categories : Soups

Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
-------- ------------ --------------------------------
5 large peaches -- peeled and quartered
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup white wine
1 cup sour cream
1 tablespoon orange juice
peach slices and mint for garnish (I also added a sprinkle of ground cinnamon)

Puree peaches, sugar, lemon juice, and wine. Add sour cream and orange juice concentrate; blend until smooth. Refrigerate until well chilled.

Serve in a pretty bowl or cup with peach slices and fresh mint.

Source:
"Culinary Memories of Merridun"

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