Every summer for the past 4 years my mom, the kidos, and I have gone to a peach orchard just 20 minutes from our home to pick the most amazingly sweet peaches. They give you baskets to take out among their hundreds of trees and you can fill them to your heart's content with yummy peaches. For only $.75 a pound we rack up on them and eat as many as possible within a few days. Then, I chop the rest up and freeze them for the coming months.
The kids really get into it and get up underneath the branches to get the big fat ones that are hiding there. I constantly have to remind Perri, however, that we want the biggest ones because she tends to feel sorry for the small ones and wants to pick those first. :)
This orchard also has strawberries in the early summer, blueberries, blackberries, plums, nectarines in mid-summer, and apples and pears in the fall. It really is a wonderful place to get really, really fresh, right off the vine produce and cheap, too! We are thankful it happens to be so close to home! Here we put the kids to work picking some blueberries. They are such willing and great helpers!
It was a bright day and...Oh my word!!! I just realized that bow is bigger than Perri's head!! I love BIG. BOWS and I can not lie!
I have a quick tip for ya if you are interested in canning or freezing peaches. If you have ever done either you would know what a PAIN in the uh-hum it is to peel them. If you use a paring knife you loose ALOT of the tasty flesh trying to take of the skin and the handle of the knife ends up sticky from the juiciness of the peach.
I have found that if you place the peaches in a pan of boiling water for 20 seconds and then quickly pull them out, the skin EASILY wipes away with a dish towel or can be peeled by hand without losing ANY of the flesh. Easy. Easy. Easy. (As much as you tends to get on my nerves, thanks Alton Brown for that time saving suggestion.)
And BTW, you will want to bleach the dishtowel out after this process as it will be very icky after you get done.
All I do after I peel the skin away is cut them into slices, put them into a quart size freezer safe baggies, and sprinkle a little sugar in. I shake the bag to melt the sugar and off they go into my freezer.
My kids love when I thaw out one of the bags and it's just the right serving size to put on top of vanilla ice cream or their pancakes in place of syrup.
There really is nothing like summer fruit!