Tag Archives: peach

Peach and Ginger Compote

Single Ingredient Simplicity 

Peach & Ginger Compote

Peach & Ginger Compote, with Sheep’s Yoghurt and Pecan nuts

An Indian Summer, and general warmer ‘Fall’ (that’s Autumn to you and me) here in California, means fresh stone fruit such as peach is still in abundance at farmers markets this time of year.   Perfectly ripe, soft, sweet, and crying out “eat me, cook me, don’t let me go to another home”.  The simplicity of devising a recipe based on a single item is the inspiration for this post.  Sometimes we worry so much about creating something so fancy and innovate we forget that using one ingredient as the star of the show is perfectly acceptable.

I had been messing around with a peach and egg scramble (trust me it works) for breakfast one day last week, but just not satisfied with the way both the stewed peaches, and the addition of ground cinnamon and ginger made the eggs look kinda brown and dull – quite frankly like something the cat brought back up.  So, to make the most of these beautiful peaches I decided to stew and then blend them, and then they could be added to a dish of choice without the whole thing looking brown and murky.  I ended up with this delicious compote.  The compote is no where near as sweet as a sugar stewed Jam but pleasantly sweet enough to serve as a wonderful topping to yoghurt or pancakes for a decadent breakfast.

The additional sweetener in this compote is entirely optional and depends on how you intend on using it, how naturally sweet your peaches are, and of course your health goals.  I suggest you give it a good taste first before decided to wang in some stevia, maple syrup or raw honey. Natural sugars – including those from fruit are still sugars, so go easy on the daily doses.  I use both fresh and ground ginger I this recipe, since fresh ginger is highly therapeutic, and ground ginger more reminiscent of the warming ginger flavour you would achieve from devouring a cookie.

Peach & Ginger Compote Breakfast Spread

Peach & Ginger Compote Breakfast Spread

I chose to serve mine for breakfast with organic Local sheep’s yoghurt and topped with a few pecan nuts. I also had a boiled egg to my spread, since I do need some extra protein with my breakfast for complete satiation.  To use up the remainder of the compote I whipped up some coconut flour & almond butter pancakes and used the compote to drizzle over them with a blob of yoghurt.  These pancakes were the best I’ve ever made if I do say so myself! If you want to see the photographic evidence you’ll have to check out my Instagram feed.

Ingredients (serves 2-3)

  • 2 medium sized ripe peaches, de-stoned, medium dice
  • 1/4 cup  /  60mls  (more as necessary) of water
  • tsp grated fresh ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • pinch sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • squeeze lemon juice, roughly 1/4 lemon
  • Natural sweetener to taste.  For example a couple of drops of stevia liquid, maple syrup, raw honey or palm sugar

Method

  • Place the peach in a small saucepan with the water and the fresh ginger, bring to the boil, then simmer until the peach softens.  During the simmering process you should regularly try to smash the peaches with a fork.  Add more water during cooking as necessary, you don’t want the peaches to fry or dry out.    After an initial 10 minutes add the ground ginger and cinnamon. The entire simmering and softening will take roughly 20-25 minutes depending on the ripeness of your peach.
  • Using a hand-stick blender (or other blender of choice) whizz up the peaches till smooth.  Add the rest of the ingredients and blend again.  Taste.  Decide whether additional sweetener is required.
  • Place in the refrigerator to chill before serving as desired (Though you could if you wanted eat it warm, I just have a thing against warm fruit!)

For complete Californian authenticity store in a glass mason or kilner jar.  Alternatively an old jam jar (particularly those gorgeous Bonne Mamman jars with gingham lids) will do.  Should keep for a week in the fridge.

Pigeon, Griddled Peach & Almond salad with a Thyme Vinaigrette

Peachy Keen 

Pigeon Salad

Pigeon, Griddled Peach & Almond Salad with a Thyme Vinaigrette

If you don’t like to mix sweet fruit into a savoury salad then look away now.

I’m not one to often do this, but there was something so appealing about the peach that was staring at me in the veg shop the day I cooked this up.  I could have just eaten it for pud of course, but somewhere in my subconscious I recalled a griddled pear salad, and wondered if this would work just as well.

I’ve been reading the Flavour Thesauraus lately and it has encouraged me to get more adventurous with my pairings.  Almond and peach are featured in the book as inviting combo.  The only meat to be paired with peach is prosciutto.  Putting pigeon in my salad instead was a bit of a ‘oh heck just bloody go for it’ decision as I was standing in the kitchen playing ready steady cook with the contents of my fridge and the rest of my shopping bag.  Its SO much fun to freestyle in the kitchen, never quite knowing what the end of the dish will look or taste like. 

The dressing was inspired by the Lebanese spice Za’atar – which is traditionally a combination of thyme, sumac and sesame seeds.  Though I sadly had to leave out the sesame seeds since they weren’t in my pantry on this particular day.

This salad really works.  Pairing a tasty bit of rare meat,  green leaves for freshness, a sweetly gridded piece of fruit, almonds for that top layer of crunch and tangy vinaigrette to bring it all together.  The end result was gorgeous.  I made enough for lunch the next day too.  A very wise move.

I’ll look forward to what happens when I next play ready stead cook.

Ingredients (Serves 2 – there will be dressing left over)

  • Thyme Vinaigrette:  3 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil, 1 Tablespoon Lemon Juice, tsp Dijon Mustard, pinch Himalayan Salt, 1 Tablespoon Thyme leaves, 2 tsp Sumac
  • Salad:  1 peach, 6 small pigeon breasts, 1 gem/romaine lettuce torn into pieces, handful rocket, handful of toasted almonds, crushed (approx 16)

Method

  • First prepare the vinaigrette by placing all the ingredients into a lidded jar and shaking together.  Adjust the oil/acid/seasoning to taste.  Set aside (dressings always taste better once the flavours have had time to infuse.  If the oil and acid separate re shake before you dress!
  • Slice the peach, and brush with olive oil. Heat up a griddle pan.  Griddle the peach for a few minutes each side until lightly charred with griddle lines.  Set aside.
  • Next, season the pigeon and add a little oil to the surface, place skin-side down in the griddle pan.  Cook for 3 minutes each side and set aside.  It will need to rest for at least 3 minutes before it can be sliced to top the salad.
  • Meanwhile take the lettuce & rocket and dress with 1 Tablespoon of the dressing.
  • Now you can assemble the salad.  Place half the leaves on each plate, and dot around the peaches, pigeon slices and crushed almonds.  Add a sprig of thyme and a touch more dressing to serve.

p.s If you don’t know what ready steady cook is…. A TV show where chefs are paired with members of the public to compete against each other in a blind 20 minute recipe challenge.  They get 5 ingredients each and the winner is crowned by the audience based on who comes up with the best recipe.