7.22.13 Peaches & Herb
Peaches are either clingstones or freestones, depending on whether or not the flesh sticks to the stone. The white ones tend to be quite sweet with little acidity, while yellow peaches typically have a bright tang coupled with sweetness. Any variety works with this recipe, though you may want to adjust the sweetness of the syrup accordingly.
Peaches Poached in Wine with Thai Basil
- — 12 small, perfectly ripe yellow peaches
- — 1 bottle pinot grigio, or other dry white wine
- — 3 star anise
- — 3 green cardamom pods, lightly crushed
- — large handful Thai basil
- — 1/2 cup organic cane sugar
- — 1/3 cup honey
- — 6 sprigs Thai basil, for garnish
Rinse peaches and rub off any fuzz.
Pour wine into a heavy, flat-bottomed pot large enough to accommodate the peaches in a single layer. Place peaches in, stem side up. Add as much water as needed to almost cover peaches. Add star anise, cardamom and half the Thai basil.
Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then cover and cook until peaches are just tender, about 6 minutes. When done, a sharp knife will slip easily into a peach.
Turn off heat and, using a slotted spoon, remove peaches to a shallow bowl. Set aside to cool.
Meanwhile, stir sugar, honey and second half of Thai basil into wine mixture and bring to a slow boil over medium-high heat. Cook until reduced by two-thirds into a glossy syrup, about 15 minutes. Strain out herbs and spices and set aside to cool.
Once syrup is cool, pour over peaches. Fruit and syrup can be refrigerated and served cold, or held at room temperature and served that way.
To serve, place two peaches in each of 6 bowls and spoon syrup over. If you like, add a few fresh raspberries and/or a dollop of lightly whipped cream.