Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Waffling Leftovers: Marinated Peaches

Today's waffling adventure is another rather, uh, nontraditional one.  If the concept of waffling things that aren't waffle batter is new to you, you might want to start with my master post, and then return here.
Marinated Peaches: Transformed!
Remember the time I waffled figs?  This was basically inspired by that, although rather than just starting with leftover fruit, I started with leftover marinated fruit,  originally part of a salad.  And rather than just having waffled fruit, I jazzed it up, inspired by my amazing waffled plantain sundae from the week before.

Will it Waffle: Leftover Marinated Peaches?  Yup, smoky, grilled, and totally saved them

Attempt #1: August 2017

The Original: Heirloom Tomato and Stone Fruit Salad with Burrata.
First, let's start with the original.  One of my favorite "salads".  Heirloom tomatoes and assorted stone fruit (peaches, plums, nectarines, apricots), drizzled with olive oil and a balsamic reduction, and topped with burrata.

Oh how I love this salad.  Think of a basic caprese, and then imagine something 100x better.  High quality assorted beautiful heirloom tomatoes, all incredibly flavorful on their own.  Never tried mixing in stone fruit?  Do it.  It works great, I promise.  Plenty of perfectly ripe, creamy burrata, obviously sooo much better than just fresh mozzarella.  Incredible balsamic drizzle.  Olive oil and salt to make all the flavors pop that much more.

Oh yes.
The Leftovers: Soggy Marinated Peaches.
But the leftovers?  Yeah.  As you can imagine, this salad has very short shelf life.  I separated out the burrata from the produce to try to make it last longer.

The next day, I salvaged all the heirloom tomatoes.  They had gotten a bit mealy from being in the fridge, but, when paired with leftover burrata (which did hold up fine), I didn't mind.  And they were even more flavorful from the balsamic, which was now not just a drizzle, but, a marinade.

The stone fruit was a mixed bag.  The plums lasted fine.  The softer fruit though got really mushy.  It just wasn't very good, even if the flavor was there.

We were going to throw it out, but, I decided that if I was going to throw it out, I might as well throw it on the waffle iron ...
Into the Waffle Iron...
So into the waffle iron the soggy slices went.  350 degrees.

They made a lot of noise at first, as all the moisture started cooking out.
Almost Done ...
Once the moisture was gone, the slices started grilling (er, waffling).  Once they had decent waffle marks, I pulled them off.

Sure, they didn't turn into a waffle, but, they did basically grill.  (I do wonder if I should have formed them into a mound and just tried to make a waffle patty out of them though ... next time!)
Waffled Marinated Peaches with Balsamic Basil Cream!
I plated them up with salted balsamic basil cream that I made while the peaches were cooking.  That sounds fancy right?  Ha.  I just mixed whipped cream with the rest of the marinade remaining in my container, and added a little fleur de sel.

The peaches were actually good.  Soft, slightly caramelized.  A bit smoky.  Totally edible in this form, and honestly, they were so mushy and off putting before waffling that they really were trash.  Waffling saves yet another item headed for the trash!

The cream was tasty too, but I found myself wanting a cold component, so I added Milk & Honey ice cream after the photo was taken.  I liked the cold ice cream with the hot fruit much better, and wished I had just plated it with the honey ice cream originally, and drizzled the balsamic reduction over it all (again, next time!).

So, overall, yes, a success.  The peaches were too soggy to really eat before, and transformed into a very tasty dessert.  I'd do this again, but, just go for ice cream.

Attempt #2: September 2017

The Original: Arugula salad, with stone fruit, burrata, and balsamic drizzle.
A few weeks later, we had another salad featuring stone fruit and burrata, this one a bit more traditional, with a base of peppery arugula.

It was great, and there was plenty leftover.  I saved a bunch of the white peaches and burrata, and tons of the balsamic marinade.
Peaches ready to waffle!
The peaches went into the iron, untreated.  350 degrees.
Grilled Peaches!
They grilled up beautifully.

The first few didn't even make it onto my waiting plate - they were hot, slightly caramelized, and totally delicious.  I also forgot to take a photo, I was too busy enjoying the amazingness.

With the rest, I made a spinach salad topped with both fresh and grilled peaches, burrata, and the balsamic drizzle (and some olive oil).  So simple, but so so good.

So, leftover marinated peaches, not only do they transform into a great dessert, they also work as a salad topper!  


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