For me peaches are the fruit that means summer. There's nothing quite like the taste and soft texture, and the juice which invariably runs down your chin is sticky, sweet and delicious.
You may ask why, in that case, is there any need to do anything to this fruit other than eat it as it comes? And while I'd be inclined to agree, sometimes pairing ingredients makes them more than the sum of their parts and can elevate them to something sublime.
This recipe is a delicious way to end those long lunches outside in the sun. The syrup is sweet and slightly exotic tasting and the vanilla and cloves in it are a classic match with the peach. A quick poaching of the fruit somehow mellows and intensifies the flavour at the same time and using jasmine tea gives a delicate floral taste. This is best served cool, so make it early and leave it to rest while you tuck in to lunch.
Ingredients 100g coconut sugar (or unrefined brown sugar) 150ml brewed jasmine green tea 1 vanilla pod, split open 3 cloves 2 black cardamom pods, seeds only 4 flat peaches A few sprigs of thyme
Method Put everything except the peaches and thyme in a saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring every now and then. Boil for about two minutes, then turn off and leave to infuse for about half an hour. After it's been cooling for about ten minutes, stab the bottom of the peaches a few times then sit them in the syrup for twenty minutes. Bring back to the boil and simmer the peaches for about three minutes each side. Serve the peaches with some thyme leaves and plenty of the syrup.It's too late now, but Bee has suggested sprinkling crumble topping all over these. That sounds amazing. It would also probably be nice to have a glass of iced tea with it. Maybe I'll try that next time.