Peaches are one of the summer’s most anticipated fruits. Picked at the peak of ripeness, Idaho peaches are large, sweet, and drip-down-your-chin juicy! Unlike peaches grown elsewhere and shipped to Idaho from other states, locally grown peaches are tree-ripened for juicier, more flavorful fruit.
What to Look for: Ripe, yellow-fleshed peaches should have a golden hue behind their reddish blush. That blush is not a sign of ripeness but where the sun shone on the peach. Lighter yellow color means less sun and a less-ripe peach.
Avoid peaches that are bruised, scratched, or have wrinkly skin. Pay attention to the smell and feel of each fruit. Most peaches smell the way they taste. No smell usually means no taste and is an indicator of under-ripeness. Ready-to-eat peaches should feel heavy for their size, but the “give” of a peach can tell you how ripe the fruit is. Hold the peach in the palm of your hand and gently squeeze with your whole fingers to gauge how hard or soft the peach is. Real “give” when you squeeze means the peach can be eaten right away or left out on the counter for a day or two before becoming soft. Soft peaches will bruise slightly when you squeeze and should be enjoyed right away.
Peach Basics Cont.
How to Store: Store at room temperature until ripe – refrigerating peaches before they are ripe can lead to loss of flavor, texture, and appearance. To hasten ripening, place peaches in a paper bag at room temperature and check daily. Once ripe, place peaches in a plastic bag and refrigerate.
Where to Find: Look for sweet and juicy Idaho peaches at local retailers like Whole Foods, WinCo, Albertsons, local farmers markets, and roadside fruit stands. Or visit orchards that sell directly or offer U-pick opportunities.