(Theguardian) – This crisp cornbread demands to be dunked in sticky roast peaches with boozy cream
Peaches and cream: an evocative pair of words, conjuring up memories of hot summers, blushing fruit and al fresco dinners. Although I love to eat a perfect peach sliced and macerated in delicious white wine and served chilled with pouring cream, a roast peach, sticky with its caramelised juices, is somehow more sultry and enticing for a late-summer treat.
Tequila roast peaches and toasted cornbread
Halve the honey for a more savoury version, or try adding a pinch of cayenne to the mix.
Prep 20 min
Cook 40 min
90g butter, plus extra for greasing
70g plain flour, plus extra for dusting the tin
110ml whole milk
3 tbsp runny honey
170g sweetcorn kernels
1 small bunch thyme, leaves picked
3 tsp baking powder
130g fine polenta
1 large pinch salt
Vanilla ice-cream, to serve (optional)
For the peaches
6 peaches, halved and stoned
4 tbsp soft brown caster sugar
½ tsp cinnamon
2 tbsp tequila or muscat
100ml good-quality cream
Heat the oven to 170C (150C fan)/335F/gas 3. Grease a one-litre loaf tin, line the bottom with greaseproof paper and add a handful of flour, tilting it on all sides so there is a light layer of flour all over the tin. Turn the tin upside down and lightly knock it against the counter to get rid of any excess flour.
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Melt the butter in a small saucepan. Crack the eggs into a blender, add the melted butter, milk, buttermilk and honey, and blitz until combined. Add the corn and half the thyme, then roughly blitz, leaving some chunks of corn intact.
Sift the flour and baking powder into a medium-sized mixing bowl and whisk in the polenta and salt. Add the blended corn mix to the bowl and lightly whisk it into the sifted flour until just combined: overmixing at this stage will make for a heavy cornbread. Pour the batter into the prepared tin and bake for 20-25 minutes, until risen and golden. Leave to cool in the tin, then turn out.
When ready to serve, turn the oven up to 200C (180C fan)/390F/gas 6, then halve and stone the peaches and put in an ovenproof pan. Sprinkle over the sugar, cinnamon and the rest of the thyme leaves, fleck with the butter and roast for 10 minutes. Pour over the tequila and cream, then roast again for four to five minutes, until caramelised and golden. Alternatively, roast in a pan over the embers of a barbecue. Serve with the still- warm cornbread , and more cream or vanilla ice-cream, or brush slices with a little melted butter and heat in a frying pan until caramelised.
And for the rest of the week
The cornbread is delicious toasted for breakfast and served with honey or jam. If you’ve made a more savoury bread, it is good toasted as part of a cheeseboard, or served with roast figs and soft goat’s cheese.