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Make the most of stone fruit season

We might still be experiencing scorching summer temperatures in the southern hemisphere, but autumn has officially arrived. With the commencement of March comes darker mornings, shorter days, crisper air, and quite tragically, the completion of stone fruit season #sadface.

Make the most of the last few weeks of peaches, plums, apricots and nectarines while they’re cheap as chips and bursting with sweetness with this delicious selection of recipe ideas:

1.     Roasted compote: Place stone fruit wedges in a baking dish. Toss in a little coconut oil and sprinkle with cinnamon. Bake in a 200ºC/180ºC fan-forced oven for 30 minutes or until tender and golden. Enjoy for breakfast on top of yoghurt, your favourite bircher muesli or in an almond milk smoothie. Or how about a delicious dessert with a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream? Yum!
2.     Throw them in your favourite muffin mix: Looking for some yummy flavour combos? Try plum and walnut, peach and cinnamon, apricot and vanilla or nectarine and basil.
3.     Make a delicious preserve. Pop on your apron, whip out your favourite old school cookbook, sterilise some glass jars and whip up a stone fruit jam that you can enjoy whenever you’re craving a little taste of summer.
4.     Freeze them: Want to enjoy stone fruit all year around? Cut them up, pop them in a zip-lock bag and freeze them to throw into smoothies. Genius!
5.     Stone fruit cobbler/pie: Cook them down on the stove with a little orange zest and a cinnamon stick and then throw in a baking dish and top with your favourite pastry or crumble topping. Bake in a hot oven until golden. Yum!
6.     Add them to your salads: A little sweetness in a fresh salad really makes it pop. Throw wedges of stone fruit in fresh or grill them a little to caramelise the flesh. Check out our Coconut Poached Chicken & Grilled Peach Salad recipe below.

Coconut Poached Chicken & Grilled Peach Salad
Serves 2

1 can coconut milk
4 slices of ginger
juice of 1 lime
1 chicken breast
1 yellow peach, cut into wedges
1 cup red cabbage
1 cup watercress leaves
½ cup mint leaves
¼ cup roasted cashews
1 tablespoon olive oil
juice of ½ lime
½ teaspoon finely grated ginger
½ teaspoon honey

1.     Place the coconut milk, ginger and lime juice in a medium saucepan over a medium-high heat. Add the chicken breast. If it is not covered in liquid add a little water. Bring to the boil and then turn off the heat immediately. Cover the saucepan and set aside for 35 minutes. Remove the chicken breast and allow to cool to room temperature. Slice into 5mm thick slices.
2.     Meanwhile, place a greased chargrill pan over a medium-high heat. Add the peach slices and cook for 102 minutes on each side or until golden grill marks appear. Remove.
3.     Toss shredded cabbage, watercress, mint leaves, roasted cashews and grilled peaches in  large bowl.
4.     To make the dressing whisk olive oil,  lime juice, ginger and honey. Season with salt and pepper and then toss through the salad. Top with sliced chicken to serve. 

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  2. How do farmers' markets and local produce markets play a role in accessing fresh stone fruits? greeting :

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