The dream finally became a reality for Mike and me last weekend: We went peach picking. The weather was perfect, the yellow peaches at Stribling Orchard were ripe and juicy. We picked peaches right off the branches for a few hours and even snuck a few samples right in the field with peach juice running down our forearms. Afterwards, we were able to top off the afternoon with a few glasses of wine at Naked Mountain Winery, where they have a gorgeous deck and pastoral view of the rolling Virginia countryside. At the end of the day we were relaxed, a little tanner and in possession of about 30 lbs of peaches.

Of course, the best part is finding new and fun ways to devour all these delicious peaches. Over the next couple of days, we’ll post the recipes we’ve tried and liked in case you go peach picking or simply bring home a fuzzy peach haul from the local market.

Peach-Opal Basil Lemonade

We’ve been wanting to try this drink recipe from John Ash’s From the Earth to the Table cookbook since we picked it up while wine tasting in Temecula last year.  It involves a few more steps than your basic frozen or pre-made lemonade but the combination of opal basil (an earthier, purple cousin of the more common sweet basil) and fresh fruit really drew us in. (more…)