Monday, April 28, 2014

White Zinfandel Poached Peaches with Minted Whipped Cream

In French, this would be called pêche pochée. Alternatively top the peach with the sauce and a dollop of Cream Fraiche. My friend Doug was allegic to strawberries so anytime I was making a strawberry dessert I made these for him.

5 large firm yellow cling peaches with no soft spots
2 cups white Zinfandel
1 cup Johannesburg Riesling
1/2 cup sugar

Minted Whipped Cream
½ teaspoon mint extract
1/2 pint heavy cream
2 tablespoon sugar
Garnish with mint leaves

The recipe is for four people but the extra peach is in case you mess one up. We need to remove the skins without damaging the peaches. Boil enough water in a large pot to immerse all the peaches at the same time. Immerse the peaches in the boiling water, using a large slotted spoon (or basket ladle), to spin them around so all surfaces get the hot water treatment. Leave these in for 2 ½ minutes then remove each peach to cool. While still warm, use the tip of the knife near the stem opening to pick up the skin and peel it from the peach. When all peeled, we are ready to poach these in a frying pan. Add all of the wine and the sugar and bring to a boil. When boiling, lower the peaches into the liquid. Using a large spoon, spoon the hot liquid over each peach to cook them slightly. With the liquid at a boil, continue to poach each in turn until a toothpick inserts fairly easily. Spoon out each peach to its own decorative serving bowl. Transfer a bit of the wine sauce from the larger spoon to a cold spoon so you can taste if it’s sweet enough. The sauce is recommended to be just sweet but not overly so. Reduce until there are just a few tablespoons to pour over each peach. Allow these to cool on the counter.

Whip the cream adding the sugar and mint extract at the end. Taste the cream. When the peaches are still a bit warm, Plop a dollop of cream over each peach and a spring of mint on top and serve.  

For a variation, try a rose of Cabernet and Chardonnay for the two wines.

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