When summer comes along, so does a variety of sweet and delicious fruit. Certain foods are a regular sign of summer. Things like strawberries, apricots, peaches, and nectarines. They all bring about their own delightful jams, jellies, and deliciousness. They are used in a wide array of recipes and summer food ideas that we all enjoy. But how do you just sit down on a hot summer day and enjoy a fresh nectarine? Let’s dig down to our topic of “How to Eat Nectarine.”
Let us be honest, there is nothing like sitting down and enjoying some fresh fruit. Perhaps it is a memory that is with you from childhood, or maybe you have just discovered the joy of snacking on fresh Nectarines. Nectarines are often confused for peaches for those who are not too well versed in the similar fruits. Let’s start there, with the differences between peaches and nectarines. Then we will dive into ways to enjoy nectarines.
Are Nectarines & Peaches The Same?
Peaches originated from Asia and eventually were cultivated in North America. In an effort to breed heartier varieties of the peach, the nectarine was born in California in the 1940s and 50s. One can easily see why the two fruits often get confused. They are remarkably similar both genetically and in appearance. The main difference however is the skin. Peaches tend to have a thicker skin that is much fuzzier than that of a nectarine.
For the most part, peaches and nectarines are used interchangeably when it comes to cooking. However, the skin on a peach is usually removed before cooking due to the thickness which makes it tougher when it is cooked. Nectarines’ thinner skin is much more enjoyable and tender when cooked. Therefore, making them a better choice when you want to avoid the extra effort of peeling.
Although they are from the same family and share similar tastes, and textures, they are quite different fruits. To be honest, the differences are very subtle, and if you did not know, any better, you would not notice the difference at all. Keeping continue to our topic of how to eat nectarine.
Slicing A Nectarine To Eat
Fresh fruit is enjoyable no matter how you decide to eat it. Slicing some can be a little trickier than others though. The reason for that being that some fruits have “pits” in the center of them which means you cannot simply slice through and enjoy. The first step to enjoying your fresh fruit is to give it a quick little splash under some running water to ensure all the dirt and stuff is off. Now that you have cleaned your nectarine, let’s get it sliced up for your snacking enjoyment.
Take your knife, and then slice your nectarine lengthwise down from the top to the bottom. You want to make sure that you are going deep enough to feel the pit. This way the pit will guide you as you slice your nectarine. Make four to five incisions this way moving your knife over a bit for each slice. Your next incision is going to be around the nectarine across the center, so you are cutting it in half.
Again, you want to make sure that you are deep enough that your knife meets the pit that is in the center. Now that you have made these slices in your nectarine, you want to hold it, so the pit is facing up. Now, all you want to do is give your nectarine a gentle twist that will separate all the pieces you have just cut. They should gently begin to separate, and you will have a nice bowl of nectarine pieces to enjoy.
How To Eat A Whole Nectarine
You can also enjoy nectarine whole like an apple too. As with all fresh fruit, you are going to want to wash it first to make sure that all the dirt and bugs are off it. If you are storing your nectarines in the fridge you are going to want to let it sit out until it reaches room temperature, this will allow you to genuinely enjoy the nectarine and all its flavors. Once it is at room temperature you can simply enjoy your nectarine.
However, if you wish to peel the skin off, then can simply peel it and then enjoy it. There is a rather unique way to peel nectarines if you do not have a peeler handy. You want to grab a small pot and fill it with water. Bring that water to a boil, then place the nectarine into the pot for one minute. I know what you are thinking… I want to eat it not cook it. But stay with me, and you will soon see.
After your nectarine has bathed for a minute, take it out and immediately place it into a bowl of ice water. Let your nectarine sit in the ice water long enough to cool down. Meantime, go ahead and fold some laundry, or finish putting away the dishes while it takes the ice bath. Once your nectarine has had time to cool down, you can take it and easily remove the skin. It should just slide right off for you.
Nectarines are a great summer delight that can be used in jams, jellies, desserts, or just simply eating fresh. One thing to remember though is that it has a pit in the center that you do not want to eat. You will also want to avoid cutting your nectarine until right before you are ready to eat it. They will start to lose their color rather quickly.
A quick little trick to maintaining the color of your nectarines if you are going to be serving them in a fruit salad is to use water and lemon juice. All you need to do is dip your nectarine slices into a cup of water with a tablespoon of lemon juice. This will help maintain the color, as well as make a nicer presentation.
You always want to make sure that your nectarine is ripe before you ingest it. A ripe nectarine will be slightly spongy to the touch and give off a lot of aroma.