Just peachy

Posted on January 5, 2006 by Aun

I like simple old-fashioned desserts. One of my favorites is peach melba. Firstly, peaches are one of the few fruits I really enjoy eating. (It’s a really short list: peaches, mangosteens, clementines, berries, musk melon, and mangoes. Oddly enough, while I’m not a great fruit eater, I love drinking fresh juices.) Secondly, my mother use to make peach melba for my brother and me when we were really young.

A traditional peach melba, as invented by the great Escoffier in 1892, consists of peach halves, served with vanilla ice cream and topped with a sweet raspberry sauce. My mother’s version is a bit of a departure. She topped hers with vanilla ice cream, Hershey’s chocolate syrup, peanuts and whipped cream. Not especially authentic but delicious nonetheless, especially for a kid with a sweet tooth.

S and I picked up some lovely peaches from our favorite fruit seller this past weekend. I decided to use one of them to make my own easy-peasy-Japanesey peach melba. My plan was to simply slather S’s lovely vanilla ice cream over the peeled peach halves and devour it with some whipped cream while watching America’s Next Top Model (I know, I know… not really intellectual fodder, but it is fun!). However, when I told S my plans, she quickly convinced me that my dessert should be as beautiful as it is delicious.

She had some chocolate mayo cake leftover from her Bavarian timbale; amazingly, it was also still very fresh. She cut a small round from it with a metal ring. She then used the same metal ring to shape some vanilla ice cream, which she placed over a thin disk of the chocolate mayo cake. A peach half went on top of this and to really make me happy, she drizzled some chocolate sauce over the whole thing. I also made a small batch of whipped cream, which I liberally spread over the peach right before digging in. It was wonderful.


While totally unrelated to food, I’ve decided to include a photo I just took of our younger Golden Retriever Alix. After coming home from work last night, S–who likes to do this every 6 months or so–asked me to help her re-arrange the furniture in our living room. She likes the novelty of regularly changing the seating arrangements in and tweaking the look of our apartment. This way, she argues, we get the experience of new things without actually having to buy anything. Our most recent arrangement has resulted in our coffee table being taken out of the living room and parked in our store room. This has, in turn, opened up quite a bit of empty floor space, which Alix immediately decided was her territory and flopped down in. And stayed in for the next hour or so, all the time looking very pleased with herself. I just couldn’t resist snapping a picture of the pleased pooch and posting it.

About Aun Koh

Aun has always loved food and travel, passions passed down to him from his parents. This foundation, plus a background in media, pushed him to start Chubby Hubby in 2005. He loves that this site allows him to write about the things he adores--food, style, travel, his wife and his bouncing baby boy!

What Others Are Saying

  1. radish January 5, 2006 at 2:25 am

    Your photographs look so amazing – what camera do you use to shoot? The melba sounds positively divine.

  2. Sam January 5, 2006 at 2:26 am

    chubby – Alix is gorgeous, but i am intrigued by the dog in the background, riding a tricycle?? What’s going on there then?

  3. Rose January 5, 2006 at 3:22 am

    The dog is beautiful, but so are your floors. I love dark wood floors!

  4. Hopluv January 5, 2006 at 6:37 am

    That dessert looks awesome! BTW your photo’s are great. What kinda of camera are using?

  5. Chubby Hubby January 5, 2006 at 8:30 am

    Radish and Hopluv: Thanks. I’m using a Nikon D70 right now, with a variety of lenses. But honestly, I don’t think it’s about the camera. Any good camera can take great pictures so long as the person behind it practices. :-)

    Sam: heh heh… it’s a fiberglass and steel sculpture of a dachshund riding a scooter that was made by an Indonesian artist. Its official title is “Forced Cutie” but we named her Betsy.

    Rose: Thanks. I love dark wood floors too. Funny, our floors have this real worn, beach-house look which friends are often admiring. When they ask us how we did it, we just say, “buy two dogs.”

  6. Fran January 5, 2006 at 9:45 am

    Wonderful photos and I Love Peaches too-yum. Sounds wonderful.

  7. Frederico January 5, 2006 at 10:05 am

    I noticed these days you really have a sweet tooth going!
    Unfortunately, i’m not so much of a dessert-lover… i should probably learn to make em’….. think it gets the girls? ahahah

  8. tabehodai January 5, 2006 at 12:42 pm

    Another tantalising shot of food u get to eat! You are one lucky man!

    I draw inspiration from your blog daily not only to try my hand at making better food but also taking better photos of food. What to do, no one to cook for me, so I have to do both. I say again, you are a very lucky man!

    Please keep posting.

  9. lakeside girl January 5, 2006 at 11:11 pm

    Gorgeous photos, great commentary!

    Simply amazing. =)

  10. melange January 6, 2006 at 12:03 am

    just curious, you live in an apartment and you own a golden retriever?

  11. Michèle January 6, 2006 at 2:42 am

    I love this dessert. There is nothing better than just throwing something together and making it into something gorgeous as S did. Thanks for the fabulous idea! And your dog is gorgeous, don’t be shy to post more pics of her!

  12. Melissa January 6, 2006 at 8:36 am

    Gorgeous, gorgeous dessert. And huge congratulations on your food blog award nominations!

  13. diva. January 6, 2006 at 11:15 am

    wow. that looks just marvellously delicious! and you’ve got a sweet retriever there. my family tried to adopt a labrador from SPCA just last week so our cocker spaniel won’t b so lonely but someone else adopted him before us. Darn.

  14. Chubby Hubby January 6, 2006 at 2:04 pm

    Fran: Thanks. Peaches are great. I especially love the scent of ripe peaches.

    Fred: Hmmmm… yah, does seem like a lot of desserts. I’ll get back to savories soon. And yup, learning to cook well does help with the ladies, but so does good manners, a sense of humor, and the occasional shower, among other things. ;-)

    Tabehodai: Thanks so very much. I think both S and I were lucky we found each other.

    Green Apple: Thanks!

    Melange: Yup. Small apartment, 2 golden retrievers. The little one spends a good chunk of the day lying in my bed. The older one hates going for walks. Just my luck to find too lazy, greedy pooches.

    Michele: Hiya, yah, I almost titled this post, “The simplest pleasures.” I love it when a few great ingredients can be assembled easily to form a delicious meal. Alix thanks you for the compliment.

    Melissa: Thanks, and congrats to you also. I’ve voted for you for several of the categories! Go “Chocolate vs Chocolate”!

    Diva: Awwww… labradors are so cute also. Alix is a joy. She’s really touchy-feely, always has to be near one of us and loves leaning on us or putting her paw on us. Have to admit, when S picked her out, I thought she was nuts. While she was the cutest little puppy, she wouldn’t stop running around the pet shop.

  15. J. January 6, 2006 at 2:13 pm

    gosh. another gorgeous picture! your posts and pictures are always so inspirational. :)

  16. jolyn January 7, 2006 at 1:06 pm

    Hi again. I used your Profiterole recipe but they ended up flat. Was it because the pate a choux was too wet?

  17. S January 7, 2006 at 11:27 pm

    hi Jolyn

    I’ve just looked at the recipe I posted for you again. It’s pretty much what I followed in the book and it worked for me. You mixed two large eggs plus one additional egg white, then measured out 1/2 cup to use, right?

    If they rose and then collapsed, it may have been because they were underbaked or you might have opened the oven too soon. (Like souffles, they collapse. It’s very important that you not open the oven until they’re done).

    Or your oven might not have been hot enough when you put them in (I’ve become obsessive about using an oven thermometer because the setting on the dial doesn’t always reflect the temperature inside the oven).

    Another possibility: you might not have cooked the dough long enough in the sauce pan?

    But I’m no expert. Baking Illustrated is sold at Kinokuniya (the one at Ngee Ann City). The book provides lots of helpful details in their recipes. It’s well worth taking a look at.

    And I identified the first two possible reasons your puffs turned out flat with the help of a book called Cooked to Perfection by Anne Willan. I love it because she has pictures to go with each culinary ‘problem’. She shows you the problem and explains why it might have arisen. And wherever possible, she gives you tips for salvaging your kitchen disasters.

    I’m sorry your puffs didn’t turn out right. Don’t get disheartened!

  18. sooks January 8, 2006 at 1:14 am

    your pics are great. wish i could take great food pics like yours.

  19. Fanny January 14, 2006 at 4:27 am

    Just ***gorgeous***. It looks so good. You’re a genius.

    xoxo
    Fanny

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