Peaches!

Although Palisade Peach season is coming to an end, I’ve finally been settled enough to really start enjoying the awesome local produce.

Last week, I made three batches of peach jam.

My first batch I used low sugar Sure-Jell. I’ve only ever made berry jams so this one turned out too chunky at the end (although I think it’ll really taste great on waffles).

The next batch, I used Pomona’s Pectin. This pectin uses calcium to gel, not sugar like most pectins, so you can use smaller amounts. For my first batch, I decided to only vary one thing at a time and just softened the peaches on the stovetop a bit before adding the sugar, lemon juice and pectin although I still stuck with about two cups of sugar.

This batch turned out at a much better consistency so for my final batch, I cut the sugar down to 1 cup and cooked it again.

Then this week, I decided it was time to make pie. I really really love pie.

Peaches and cream pie! I had a slice on my way to school this morning. It is delicious.

Stovetop Apple Pie

I’ve never been much for cooking. Baking is much more up my alley but baking is something that mobile living usually means giving up. (A full size RV is an exception and I loved having an oven in the toy hauler but not enough to drag that monstrosity around!) Dessert options around here have been pretty limited so I decided to see if I could make a cobbler-like dessert in a saucepan.

Google and Pinterest quickly taught me that such a thing is called a “slump.” Although slump isn’t a particularly appetizing name, there really wasn’t much of a downside to giving it a shot.

The jumping off point for my experiment was a recipe called Sour Cream Apple Slump. Given that my great-grandmother’s sour cream apple pie is one of our favorites, this boded well as something that just might taste delicious.

As we found out, it was pretty good! A pie in a skillet!

Sour Cream Apple Skillet Pie

Apple “filling”:

  • 1 TBS butter
  • 3 large apples, sliced
  • 2/3 c. sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. cornstarch
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. cloves
  • 1/2 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1 c. sour cream
  • 1/2 c. milk

Biscuit topping:

  • 1 c. flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp. sugar
  • 2 TBS cold butter
  • ~3/4 c. milk (as needed for soft batter)

In a bowl, combine the sugar, cornstarch, and spices. Melt about 1 tablespoon butter in a skillet (I used a 9 inch)—of course I subscribe to the Pioneer Woman theory of butter and approximately doubled that. Swirl pan to coat with butter and turn off heat. In the skillet, combine apples, sour cream, sugar mixture, and milk. Cover and cook over medium-low heat until fruit is slightly softened.

Mix flour, salt, baking powder, and sugar. Cut in the butter and set aside. When the fruit has softened just a touch, add the milk to form a thick batter (or thin dough). Add small dollops of the batter to the simmering fruit, distributing it evenly. Cover and gently simmer for about 20 minutes then remove the cover and simmer another 5 minutes.

 

Wedding, Part 4: Pie List

Most people have cake at their weddings.

We had pie.

PIES. 13 pies for 25 people sorta pies.

And we didn’t just have some pie, we had lots of pie. We had

  1. Traditional apple pie
  2. Sour cream apple pie
  3. Traditional apple pie
  4. Sour cream apple pie
  5. Pumpkin
  6. Chocolate pudding
  7. “Dirt” pie
  8. Cranberry-pear pie
  9. Key lime pie
  10. Banana cream pie
  11. Cherry pie
  12. Peach pie
  13. Raspberry pie

Wedding, Part 3: Castle Valley

Thursday morning, we got up, gathered our things, and prepared to head out to Castle Valley. I drove the jeep out to the house (after making a quick stop at the grocery store for the last pie ingredients) and was really quite delighted to see we’d found a beautiful spot for the wedding. I really wasn’t expecting to have Castleton Tower and Parriott Mesa so right there at our venue.

Sprocket with Parriott Mesa

F arrived not long after I did and we set to work unpacking the van. It didn’t take us too long to get everything unpacked and sorted. I put some elbow grease into cleaning up the BBQ while F washed the patio…there were some rough edges to soften to make it wedding ready! We even took this opportunity to hang up Christmas lights in the trees around the patio—no reason not to enjoy the festiveness for a few extra days!

Tony and Vanessa came out to say hello in the evening and stayed for dinner before heading back to town.We were sort of expecting Thomas and Tasha to arrive in the late afternoon but apparently they had fun exploring in the Salt Lake area and didn’t arrive until nearly 11pm. We stayed up and chatted for awhile trying to wait for Ezra and Jolleen but they didn’t pull into the house until around 1am.

Friday morning, we were up bright and early. Steve, Ezra’s dad, arrived in time for coffee. F was anxious to get out and go riding and I had PIES to bake. Turns out he had to wait for Jason to arrive and I had to wait for measuring cups since there were none in the house (fortunately, Jason called to ask if we needed anything before he drove from town and he brought me some measuring cups and spoons).

Once Jason arrived, it was a flurry of activity as I started furiously making pies and F geared up to head out. Several pies later, my mom and aunt arrived from town to assist me. Several more pies later, Amanda (our photographer) arrived at the house. Pie making continued as the dirt bikers returned and others filtered in from adventures in Arches and the greater Moab area. F’s aunt and uncle arrived from Wyoming with their daughter and her husband.

Relaxing on the porch

By the time Stacia and Andrea arrived after their long drive from Denver, it was time go visit Castle Creek Winery. We were all pleasantly surprised by the quality of the wines. The sauvignon blanc, chardonnay, and the cabernet sauvignon were all favorites. I had so much fun tasting wine with everyone, it was a really great way to wind down the day.

Castle Creek Winery

Back at the house, we had a frozen pizza feast for dinner (thanks Mom!), while people enjoyed some beer and wine on the patio and throughout the house, and then headed for bed.