Eat the Season: Peaches

By George McIvor, chairman of The Master Chefs of Great Britain 

Peaches are part of the rose family and are believed to reduce anxiety – in Hungary they are known as the ‘Fruit of Calmness’. But what is the best way to enjoy these delicious, in-season stone fruits?

The Master Chefs of Great Britain runs and sponsors a number of competitions for young chefs. The recipe ideas below were created by some of the talent who entered The David Lyell Scholarship for young pastry chefs and Young Master Chef of the Year, both for chefs aged 23 years and under. Details of next year’s competitions will be available in the autumn.

Official tasting notes 

By New Covent Garden Market, the UK’s leading wholesale fruit and vegetable market www.newcoventgardenmarket.com 

Properties: Peaches are a stone fruit in the same family as nectarines, plums and apricots. Whilst there are many varieties they fall into two main types: yellow or white-fleshed. Yellow peaches are known for their classic peach flavour, with well-balanced sweet and acidic notes. White peaches are less acidic allowing more of the sweetness to come through. For something special, look for blood peaches, with their juicy red flesh and dark, velvety skin. Also popular on the market are flat or ‘donut’ peaches. 

Usage: Blood peaches are considered the best for baking as they hold their shape better than white peaches, which tend to fall apart when cooked. Try poaching, baking or grilling for use in savoury or fruit salads, desserts or appetisers. Peaches are also great for preserving in syrup, flavouring ice creams or jams. 

The kernels can be removed from the stone and crushed, toasted or blended into liquids to infuse the bitter-almond flavour of benzaldehyde into food. 

1. Peachy keen A modern take on a peach melba makes for a beautifully fresh and delicate dessert 

2. Smooth operator Adding a delicious Masala parfait with peaches and mascarpone dish to your dessert menu will always be a winner in the summer months 

3. The Sins Peaches For an alternative to a classic Bellini, try an exotic-sounding cocktail featuring white peach purée, gin, Viognier wine and salted agave syrup 

4. Perfect marriage Peaches and raspberries are a match made in heaven as this raspberry soufflé with blood peach sorbet, compressed peaches and raspberry gel demonstrates 

5. Thyme for something different Try roast peach with peach carpaccio, lemon thyme ice cream, pine nut nougat and warm thyme snow for a wonderfully flavoursome treat 

Recipes supplied by: 

1. Billie White,
2. Summer Sharkey
3. Jordan Watson
4. Joshua Dalloway
5. Stanislas Jouenne, Trophées du Bar winner 2016. Recipe courtesy of Ponthier www.ponthier.net/en/ 

All of the recipes are available on our recipes page 

The Master Chefs of Great Britain was formed in 1980 to provide a forum for the exchange of culinary ideas and to further the profession through training and the guidance of young chefs. In addition, the association seeks to promote all that is best about British cuisine and produce. For more information on the association and the competitions and training opportunities they provide contact masterchefs@msn.com. 

>>Click here to read the rest of the July 2018 issue of Stir it up magazine <<

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