AT THIS time of the year, markets and supermarkets have delicious mounds of fragrant peaches and figs. They are sweet and inviting and taste delicious just washed, cut up and covered in thick cream. They can be made into pies or when cut up into very small pieces and mixed with a few drops of liqueur, they can be poured over ice cream or custard (remember to add a few drops of lemon juice to the peaches or they will go brown). Here are some other elegant recipes:
Figs Poached in Port
2 fresh figs per person
1 to 2 glasses of red port
2 to 4 tablespoons of honey
1/2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
Almond flakes for garnish (optional)
Whipped cream or vanilla ice cream for accompaniment
Be sure to get the agreement of whomever you live with before you pour a priceless vintage on your fruit! Prepare the figs by peeling and cutting in half. Stand them up on a microwave/oven-proof dish and pour the port over them. Sprinkle the cinnamon and nutmeg over them, and gently pour the honey on top, trying to distribute it as evenly as possible. Put in the microwave for 15 minutes on full power or a medium oven (350½F or 175½C) for 20 minutes. Allow to cool to room temperature. Serve with whipped cream, custard sauce or vanilla ice cream.
4 to 6 ripe peaches
18 to 24 lady fingers or a pound cake, sliced
2 to 4 tablespoons of apricot brandy or triple sèc or fresh orange juice
1 pint (500ml) of prepared Bird’s Custard or two packets of instant vanilla pudding
Slivered almonds or powdered cinnamon or chocolate jimmies to garnish
Make the custard according to the recipe on the Bird’s Custard container with 2 tablespoons of powder, 2 tablespoons of sugar and 1 pint (500ml) of milk. Put a piece of cellophane wrap on top of the hot custard so that all air is excluded. This will prevent a skin forming on top. Put to one side to cool. If using instant vanilla pudding, prepare as directed. Line the bottom and the sides of a large serving bowl (glass preferably) with the lady fingers or pound cake slices. Peel the peaches by plunging quickly into boiling water, removing and rinsing in cold water. Cut them into quarters and cut these in half.Place on top of the lady fingers or cake. Pour the liqueur over them. This serves a double purpose: it helps prevent the peaches from browning and it tastes great! Put the cooled custard over the peaches and spread a thick layer of whipped cream over all. Garnish and refrigerate until serving. Delicious!