David "Mas" Masumoto is known for his memoirs as much as for his peaches. He may soon be known for cobblers and shortcakes as well.
Yesterday, the Masumoto family published its first cookbook, The Perfect Peach: Recipes and Stories From the Masumoto Family Farm ($22). It bundles together 50 recipes and stories from David, wife Marcy and daughter Nikiko, who now farms the family orchard south of Fresno alongside her father.
If anyone knows what to do with a bounty of peaches, it's the people who grow them. The Masumotos have included accessible, attractive recipes for Japanese pickled peaches, peach-stuffed pork loin, fruit-infused brandy and, of course, numerous desserts.
After picking up first-of-the-season Spring Lady peaches from Masumoto Family Farm at Berkeley Bowl, we made a French peach cobbler from the book (recipe here). The smell of the almond-scented topping, lighter and glossier than traditional cobblers, made waiting for the cobbler to cool torture.
Nikiko says that during the season, she spends all day taking bites of fruit to measure their readiness to pick. After testing all these recipes, we asked her, did she ever get sick of eating peaches? The answer: No.
We didn't think so.