A bowl of sliced peaches poached in rosé wine with rosemary makes a light and refreshing dessert for hot summer evenings. You can serve the peaches on their own, as I prefer, or take a page from my daughter’s book and serve them over a luxuriously rich burrata. The recipe is simple — the peaches are slipped out of their skins, sliced and poached in a syrup flavored with the rosé and rosemary. A dash of freshly ground black pepper adds bite.
Pêches au vin au romarin / Peaches poached in wine and rosemary
I dreamed up this recipe in late July, shortly before leaving for 10 days in England — more on that later — but, as sometimes happens, the photo didn’t turn out well. So I put it on hold until I could make it again. This time I also used a different kind of peach. Here in France, peaches come in several varieties — round (pêches rondes) or flat (pêches plates), with flesh that is either peach-colored or white. The flat ones look like somebody stepped on them — they’re as wide as the round ones but only about an inch (2.5 cm) high.
I used flat white peaches the first time I made this recipe, with less than spectacular results. The slices came out more like small wedges due to the shape of the fruit, and the color of the peaches in wine was less beautiful than the second time, when I used round peach-colored fruit. So I’d recommend the second version.
And now to England, where I visited friends in Surrey and London and had various misadventures along the way, including 10 straight days of rain. Oh well. No one goes to England for the weather but rather for its charm, its theater and the British sense of humor (humour). And sometimes also for the food. I had a couple of truly spectacular meals and have brought home two recipes that I hope to share with you in future posts.
The first was at a country inn set in beautiful grounds. It was too wet to eat outside, so we perused the menu concocted by the inn’s very creative chef in a cozy room next to the very lively bar. My lunch companion and I both chose as a main course a risotto of mint and peas with watercress, fresh basil and parmesan. It was to die for. When the rain stopped and we went outside for coffee we crossed paths with the chef, who was kind enough to share the recipe. I hope to try it out at home soon.
The second was at a small, Spanish-themed restaurant in Covent Garden where the pre-theater menu included a dish of black rice with small bits of octopus and baby squid, and dots of aïoli flavored with red pimento peppers. Absolutely fabulous. That time I did not talk to the chef but will phone up one of these days to ask, among other things, whether he/she used black rice (less likely) or turned white rice black with squid ink (more likely). Once I’ve tried it out, I’ll let you know.
I like picking up new recipes when on the road. It happens less often here in Paris as I go out less often, mainly because restaurants have become very pricy and the food is often less good than what you could make at home. Which is why, for the foreseeable, I’ll continue to regale you with stories about my adventures as an everyday French chef.