Friday, September 13, 2013

Roald Dahl

I knew I was saving these peaches for a reason when I was reminded that today September 13th is Roald Dahl's birthday. Perhaps you recall he is the British writer of children's fiction, short stories for adults, a poet and screenplay writer. Dahl is best known as the author of the 1963 children's book Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and the beloved classic 1961 James and The Giant Peach. 

Dahl was inspired by his own children as he made up stories each night for them before they went to bed. In this book he tells the fantastic tale of a young abused boy who escapes from his Aunt Sponge and Aunt Spiker in a magic peach (which sprouts from magic beans). James travels thousands of miles and experiences adventures with a Grasshopper, a Ladybug, a Spider, and a centipede.

"But the peach ... ah, yes ... the peach was a soft, stealthy traveler, making no noise at all as it floated along. And several times during that long silent night ride high up over the middle of the ocean in the moonlight, James and his friends saw things that no one had ever seen before."
-Roald Dahl, James and the Giant Peach

Dahl once told a reviewer for New York Times Book Review: "Children are … highly critical. And they lose interest so quickly. You have to keep things ticking along. And if you think a child is getting bored, you must think up something that jolts it back. Something that tickles. You have to know what children like."

His children's fiction was known for its sudden turns into the fantastic, fast-moving pace, and its decidedly harsh treatment of any adults foolish enough to cause trouble for the young heroes and heroines. But his work did bring controversy with the book Matilda (1988) when he delighted his readers by taking vicious revenge on cruel adults who harmed children.

Roald Dahl died in Oxford, England, on November 23, 1999. His legacy includes many more titles and follow this link to view his work in chronological
I was rather awestruck reading the  prolific list of published Roald Dahl's books. 

Which now brings me back to the bowl of peaches in the top photo. I combined them with tomatoes for Peach Salsa. The salsa can be served over grilled, pan-fried pork, fish or chicken or even served as a side.   

 Peach-Tomato Salsa
Cook's notes: Blanch peaches and drop into ice water for easier peeling. Drain cut tomatoes and peaches on paper towels. The salsa flavors are better if refrigerated for 4 hours. Makes 6-7 cups depending on size of peaches and tomatoes used. Options to consider adding in salsa are watermelon cubes, and/or fresh basil.
Use a slotted spoon to drain off the juice before serving.
  • 4 peaches diced 
  • 2 large tomatoes diced
  • 2 tsp. honey
  • 1/4 cup red pepper
  • 1/3 cup red onion or green onion
  • 1 TB. finely minced jalapeno pepper more or less to taste
  • 1 TB. chopped cilantro or 1 tsp. dried
  • 1 small garlic clove minced
  • 1 TB. orange juice 
  • 2 TB. lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin
  • dash ginger
  • dash garlic powder
    Mix orange juice with lime juice and stir in honey with a dash of ginger, garlic powder, cilantro and minced cloves
  • Add in rest of ingredients, mix well and refrigerate till serving

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