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Slow-roasted peaches with orange caramel sauce

peaches orange caramel 05 3 12‘This is my version of the classic dish Peach Melba which was created in the 1890s by the first super-chef, Auguste Escoffier.’

Serves 6

You will need:
● 250g caster sugar
● 3tbsp water
● 250ml fresh orange juice
● 1 vanilla pod
● 100g pistachio nuts, shelled
● 75g whole almonds
● 6 medium white peaches
● 50g unsalted butter, softened until runny but not melted
● 150g fresh raspberries
● Ice cream, for serving

  1. Put 150g of the sugar in a heavy-based saucepan with 3tbsp water and dissolve over a low heat. When the sugar syrup is completely clear, increase the heat and cook for about 5 minutes until it forms a light caramel colour.
  2. Remove from the heat and stir in the orange juice. Add the vanilla seeds to the caramel sauce. Set aside to cool until thickened, then stir in the pistachio nuts and whole almonds.
  3. Pre-heat the oven to 170ºC/Gas 3½. Using a blowtorch, carefully blacken the peach skins, then use a clean cloth to wipe the skins away.
  4. Brush the peaches liberally with the butter using a pastry brush. Sprinkle them with the remaining sugar, making sure they are thoroughly coated (you can also place the sugar on a plate and roll the peaches in it).
  5. Place the peaches in a small roasting tin and spoon over the caramel. Roast, uncovered, in the oven for about 30 minutes, basting them with the pan juices every 10 minutes or so. Add the raspberries to the roasting tin for the final 10 minutes.
  6. Remove from the oven, cover the tin loosely and leave to cool – this encourages juices to gather in the bottom of the tin.
  7. Serve the peaches with the orange caramel sauce spooned over the top and the ice cream on the side.

This article was first published in at home with James Martin in December 2011. [Read the digital edition here]

Photograph: James Martin Desserts

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