One of the things I’ve learned summer after summer, is that I can eat even more peaches than the year before. If they’re the yellow ones even better. I once ate more than a dozen peaches in a day because I was really worried they’d rot and I did get sick but that’s a story for another day (we went to pick fruit at a farm, you know how those things go, you end up with more than you can actually handle) But when it comes to eating them raw, I prefer them soft, if I’m going to cook and heat them up, I will go for the firmer ones because they can hold their structure as the temperature rises. I prefer dried to fresh orange peel in this recipe but you can use fresh, you just won’t be able to grind it up well, so I recommend using a zester and then adding the fresh peel directly to the seasoning.
I have a few friends that do not like the velvety texture of peach skins (I personally love it) but if that’s an issue substitute yellow nectarines here. As always feel free to amp up the heat with chile flakes if you want to.
You’ll also notice, I’ve used kosher salt here. I use kosher less frequently in my recipes so it is easier since it is not that easy to find everywhere. But when you want a good steak or a crispy skin, kosher creates a wonderful crispy texture. If you use fine sea salt, use 1 Tbsp.
And now for some exciting book news;
I’ve started to update announce my book tour events, I’ll be traveling around the country starting October and I hope I get to meet all of you, so I get to thank you in person for all your support. Join me as I meet up with some wonderful authors. I will add more cities and events as things get confirmed and keep you updated.
This week, I am really happy to share my Washington D.C. event at the Smithsonian museum, where I will speak with Joe Yonan of the Washington Post about my book on October 11 and there will also be small bites provided by Chef Vinod of the amazing Indique restaurant (we used to go there a lot when we lived there). Tickets are now available online at the Smithsonian. I hope to see you there!!!
spiced roasted chicken with peaches
1 1/2 Tbsp kosher salt
1 Tbsp dried orange peel, ground
1 tsp sweet paprika
1 tsp red chilli flakes
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 whole chicken (about 4 lbs/1.8kg), cut and separated into breasts and legs (skin on)
4 firm yellow peaches, cut in half and stone removed and discarded
2 garlic cloves, halved
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 cup low-sodium chicken stock or water (stock gives you a richer flavor)
2 Tbsp fresh spearmint leaves (mint will also do – this is a good recipe to try out those rarer varieties such as lemon or apple)
2 Tbsp fresh flat leaf parsley leaves
1. Preheat the oven to 425F/220C.
2. Mix all the spices from the salt to pepper in a small bowl. Pat the chicken pieces dry with clean paper towels and then rub the chicken generously with the spice mix. Then transfer the chicken to a baking dish, stick the peach halves between the chicken pieces along with the garlic cloves. Drizzle the olive oil and then add the chicken stock. Transfer to the oven and bake for at 45 to 50 minutes or until the chicken turns golden brown and the skin is crispy and the internal temperature reaches 165F/74C. You should baste the chicken a few times with the liquids in the pan (I do this two to three times about every 15 minutes). Remove from oven when done and let it rest for about 5 minutes before garnishing with the mint and parsley.
Serve with bread or rice or a few slices of cold cucumber and tomatoes with salt and pepper.