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Page history last edited by PBworks 17 years, 8 months ago


Peaches, Figs and Cognac

25 Mar 06


My sweetie spotted some oldish peaches, and after we got rid of the worst, we tried figuring out a quick little dessert to make.


As I usually do when stumped for a baseline recipe, I checked out my 'How to Cook Everything' by Mark Bittman. As expected, a respectable, minimalist recipe for broiled peaches: peaches, unsalted butter, honey, full stop. While I liked the simplicity of the recipe, I was trying for something with less fat.


One of my fruit obsessions is the fig. As the California Fig Advisory Board will tell you, figs are high in fiber, with the highest overall mineral content of all common fruits, chock full of potassium, calcium and iron. Apart from being good for you, I like the subtle sweetness, almost creminess, of a ripe green Calmyrna or

black Mission fig. I also enjoy the seeds in the fig - they're crunchy like sesame seeds, but smaller.


The only thing better than the noble fig solo is to pair it up with the noble pig, specifically prosciutto, wrapping the figgy sachel in a cured piggy blanket, making a little bundle of salty-sweet heaven.


The bad news: in central Canada, fresh figs are VERY seasonal, with flocks of southern Europeans picking through the trays of figs when they come into supermarkets like the markets in their respective old countries. Dried figs are a reasonably healthy snack, but only offering a leathery (but still seed crunchy) virtual fig experience. That's why I've started trying out different types of fig jams and preserves.


My latest fave is Marcella's Orchard Fig Preserves:


Some fig preserves are a lot more uniform and processed, leaving no seeds to crunch on, so I like this one. If you look closely, you can see the little crunchy pits in the jam here.


I took some fig preserve, and mixed it up with my favourite Italian cognac, Vecchia Romagna to create a topping for the peaches.


Split the peaches, pulled the pits out, and laid them cut side up in a baking pan. Schmear the fig-cognac mix on the peach, and broil it on the middle rack of the oven until the topping starts bubbling.


Nice smooth peach taste, with the cognac adding more of a nose than a flavour, and my fave mini-seed crunch. Loved it, and planning on serving it to company next weekend.

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