It’s been one of those funny old weeks. One of those where I seem to have done a lot but I’m not actually quite sure what I actually did or achieved. All I know is that I relaxed and took each day as it came. Basically, I had a week off; a week off that I couldn’t have picked better weather for if I’d put an advance order in, for 30 degree heat and danced a sun-dance around the garden, in my pyjamas, every morning.
So what did I think was the best thing to do on ‘the hottest day of the year’ (so far)… yup, that’s right cook! When the rest of the country was dragging the barbecue out of hibernation and clearing the supermarkets out burgers, sausages and charcoal, I decided not only to cook, but get the camera out of retirement and have a vague attempt at photographing said food! I can guarantee that they won’t make my Foodgawker portfolio, but I’ve got to start somewhere again…
I’ll admit it, it’s been a while since I used anything other than my trusty iPhone to take photos, so getting back behind the lens and having to fiddle with various settings and bits and pieces to achieve something that was vaguely acceptable for the blog was delightful to say the least. And when you’ve got out of the habit of snapping your food before you eat it, you also seem to be battling a rumbling tummy too.
It wasn’t all heat-induced frustration though, it was good to be back in the saddle, and it was helped along the way by the lovely people at Natures Finest.
I’ll admit that I’ll cheat every now and then; I’m normally someone who’ll grab fresh fruit and prep it for recipes, but there are times when only a tin of chopped pineapple or peach slices will do. And chuck me a can of fruit cocktail and evaporated milk and I’m back to being 6 years old again sat at my Granny’s dining table.
Natures Finest sent me a selection of fruits, including pears in juice and pineapple in coconut water, which I used for Hawaiian Chicken wraps. But it was the peaches that caught my eye and fitted just right with the mini heatwave. In all truthfulness, I was sat trying to cool off, and all I could think about was how refreshing it would be to sink my teeth into a juicy peach. Alas, there were no peaches in the house and I couldn’t open the tub of Natures Finest peaches and eat the lot without doing something with them. It really wouldn’t have worked for this post… however I have tucked into some of the peaches that were left over; they get the thumbs up just as they are.
As a quick aside, one of the things that I really quite liked about the pears and the peaches were they were in resealable tubs, so there was no half empty tin left in the fridge that needs to be eaten as soon as possible, and invariably gets forgotten about.
Anyway, here comes your recipe. It’s quite simple really and doesn’t take long to pull together, even in 30 degree heat. I went for pan-frying the peaches and mixing them up with chicken and Prosciutto ham, sitting on top of a puff pastry sheet alongside an equally simple rocket salad. You could always miss out the savoury option all together and pan-fry the peach slices with a bit more brown sugar and honey and serve with a dollop of creme fraiche.
All this talk of peaches, I’ve just remembered I have some left in the fridge…
Peach, Chicken & Prosciutto Tarts
A quick and simple tart and the taste of summer with Natures Finest peaches.
- Natures Finest sliced peaches in juice
- 200g Roast Chicken, shredded
- 4 slice Prosciutto Ham, torn
- 1 sheet Puff pastry - eg Ready to Roll sheet (320g)
- 2 tbsp Green Pesto
- 1 clove Garlic, crushed
- 1 sprig Fresh thyme, chopped
- 100ml Peach juice, drained from slices
- 2 tbsp Brown sugar
- 1 tsp Honey
- Soy Sauce
- Preheat oven to 200C or 180C (fan) and line a baking sheet with baking parchment.
- Roll the pastry out until it is approximately 5mm thick, and cut out 2 squares approximately 15-16cm, on all sides.
- Using a sharp knife, score a line in the pastry about 1cm in from the edge, all the way around. Be careful not to cut through the pastry.
- Brush the pastry with a little milk and part-bake for 10 mins. When part-baked, remove from the oven and keep to one side.
- Whilst the pastry is baking, mix together the brown sugar, honey and peach juice, until the sugar dissolves.
- Heat a small frying pan on a medium heat. Add the peaches and the sugar, honey and juice mixture and pan-fry for approximately 5 mins on either side, or until caramelised.
- In a small bowl, mix together the crushed garlic, green pesto and the fresh thyme.
- Spread the garlic, pesto and thyme mix over the base of each of the tarts.
- Place the torn Prosciutto ham on top of the pesto and arrange the peaches and chicken on top of the ham.
- Tuck a few pieces of rocket between the peaches and chicken,drizzle with soy sauce drizzle and season with black pepper and sea salt.
- Place the tarts back in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown.
- Serve either hot or cold with a simple green leave or rocket salad.
Natures Finest Peaches and other Natures Finest products are available in most supermarkets between £1.50 and £2.25. With thanks to Natures Finest for the product selection for review.4