I’m still playing with those peaches

It seems that I’ve developed a couple of summer staples. Every year we celebrate summer with a batch of Fresh Peach Ice Cream, often over a warm bowl of Peach Melba Crumble.  Peaches not in season?  Puree any other fruit for this custard-style ice cream, instead.  The crumble recipe is pretty versatile, as well.  Substitute any fresh fruit you choose, and serve with store-bought ice cream, or skip the ice cream all together if you prefer.

And here’s a new Instant Pot recipe for you…Fresh Peach Jam in the Instant Pot. I just love this recipe. Rather than relying on tons of white sugar, the recipe calls for just a half cup or so of honey, letting the peaches shine as the star of the show. (Never mind the fact that without all that excess sugar these preserves are just a bit better for you.) I do need to mention that you control the thickness of your jam by watching your cooking time. The longer you leave the pot open on the saute setting at the end of the cooking process, the thicker the preserves will become.  I use my immersion blender to adjust the consistency, but very frequent stirring will break down the chunks of peaches, too.  Make it as smooth or chunky as you choose.  This Instant Pot recipe is a keeper!

While we’re playing with our Instant Pots, try this recipe for Swedish Meatballs in the Instant Pot. It tastes rich and creamy with only 1/4 cup of sour cream. Most of the time, Swedish meatballs are served over egg noodles, but for the Instant Pot I think the shape of butterfly pasta works better.  Working on this recipe, I discovered an interesting tip. To cook pasta to perfection, submerge the dry pasta in your liquid of choice, then use the LOW pressure setting for half the cooking time suggested on the box. At the end of the cooking time, immediately release the pressure. I throw a kitchen towel over the release valve so pasta water doesn’t spray all over the kitchen.

Tired of the same old breakfast? Trade that bowl of cereal in for Overnight Chocolate Chia Seed Pudding.  Most people would call this bowl of chocolaty goodness “dessert”,  but at only  204 calories with 6 grams of protein per half cup, I call it good.  Why not?  It’s a quick and filling start to my morning.  In fact, I think I’ll go enjoy some right now!

Do any of you have a tip for keeping those pesky squirrels from stealing my tomatoes?  They think I’ve planted them just for their enjoyment!  The irritating thing is, after a bite or two our little friends throw that tomato down and pick another.  Squirrels are not afraid of plastic snakes or fake owls.  Even a hefty sprinkle of cayenne pepper doesn’t deter them.  Those furry robbers just sample one, decide it’s not to their taste, and move on to take a good bite out of the next.  I’ve had to resort to buying my tomatoes at the farmers’ market!   There has to be an answer.

Oh well,
Be thankful for what life gives you.

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