Fresh Peaches in Flavored Syrup; A Great Summer Recipe
We’ve all had peaches in syrup, out of cans, and they very likely did little for us, one way or another.
A lucky few of us have had homemade peaches in lightly flavored syrup – and for us; the 11 months of the year that lack fresh local peaches are but filled with melancholic longing…OK, OK – things aren’t so bad, but these peaches are pretty darn good and well worth looking forward to with enthusiasm for August evenings of pleasure.
The technique here is pretty brainless – make up some simple syrup; flavor it as you’d like, and give some fresh sun ripened peaches a quick boiling bath in the syrup before chilling in the fridge for up to a week or so.
Fresh Peaches in Flavored Syrup
- 6 cups of water
- 1 lb of white sugar
- 6 fresh and ripe peaches
- Flavorings (see below)
- First, make your simple syrup. Mix together the water and the sugar in a pot and bring it to a boil, stirring, until all of the sugar has dissolved. This is now syrup…!
- Peel, core and slice the peaches into large wedges, and pop them into the pot.
- Add a touch of flavorings (see the list below) and simmer the peaches in the flavored syrup for about 5 minutes.
- Let cool on the stove-top and then transfer to the fridge for up to a week or so. Serve as is, with syrup, or atop vanilla ice cream, for a glorious late summer treat.
Flavoring Ideas for peach syrup
Peaches go well with a host of flavors. The key here is to add the flavorings in with some caution, to keep the peaches as the deserving stars of the show.
You may consider adding
- Fresh mint leaves (4 or 5 sprigs)
- A shot of bourbon or Grand Marnier or Cointreau
- A Tbls or two of fresh ginger, sliced
- Dried lavender (1 tsp)
- Lemon zest (the zest from a whole lemon)
- The zest from a whole orange
- 3 or 4 whole star anise
- 1 vanilla pod
- ¼ cup of balsamic vinegar
- A cup of fruity white wine or sparkling white (asti, riesling, zinfandel…)
- Anything else you think would go nicely!
It’s fun to experiment with flavor combinations from the list above. Start off by adding less, as you can always add more of any flavor, but you can’t very well remove it after it’s in. If after the peaches have cooled, you think the flavorings are too mild, simply remove some of the syrup from the peaches, add in some more of whatever flavor you’d like, and bring it to a boil again, thus infusing the additional flavor with the syrup. Let the syrup cool once again, and then let it steep into the peaches in the fridge prior to eating. You don’t want to boil the peaches a second time, as they will get mushy.
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