Friday, June 15, 2012

Peaches or Nectarines à la Provence

Not so long ago, a fellow blogger, Aidan, posted a yummy dessert on her blog conjugating irregular verbs.  It sounded so good, I just had to make it for myself. 

I've made poached pears before, but never poached nectarines.  I am not a great fan of pears, I don't like the graininess against my tongue...but peaches or nectarines I really do like.

The ingredient in Aidan's recipe which spurred me on was the use of Herbes de Provence.  I have been employing this mixture of herbs in my cooking ever since I first had them while living in Europe.  I recall vividly looking for them after returning to the U.S. to have on hand for my own cooking needs.  That was about 29 years ago...I can't believe it has been that long ago...but time goes by so quickly.  I continue, to this day, to have a large bottle of Herbes de Provence in my cupboard.

I followed the recipe provided by Aidan on her blog,  click here for the recipe.

The results were as good as she first described.  In fact,  it smelled so wonderful I had to taste one immediately even though I had just finished eating breakfast.  They are probably good without the whipped cream, but I can tell you for sure that the one I ate with whipped cream was supremely yummy. I also thought that I couldn't eat a whole nectarine, but as I spooned the very last bite and was scraping the bottom of the plate for the flavorful juice, I knew I was absolutely wrong!

That's topped with whipped cream, a sprig of mint, and a sprig of thyme.

I ate mine at room temperature, I think a colder temp would mask the subtle flavor of the herbs.  Don't add too much vanilla either, go with less than 1/2 a teaspoon, so the herbs aren't overpowered.  Since the sauce is sweet, I didn't add any sugar to the whipping cream...but if you prefer lots of sweetness, go ahead and add more sugar to the cream.

This is a lovely dessert to have for dinner guests.  Everything can be made way in advance and assembled just before serving.  As you can see by the photos, it is quite elegant and will impress your dinner (or lunch) companions.

Oh, another hint, it must be served with a spoon and a knife.  The knife helped to cut through the skin as I chose not to peel the fruit.

Thanks, Aidan, for showing me another way to cook with Herbes de Provence.


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