I had meant to pop this recipe up over the bank holiday weekend. Poached fruits are the perfect thing to have in the fridge to dip in and out of on a long weekend. They are delicious with pancakes, yoghurt, granola, a wedge of cake and of course ice cream.
However, I got sidetracked with a weekend of partying. I ate and drank all the bad good things. Must make these this week as part of a my five a day on the road to recovery...
STAR ANISE POACHED PLUMS
175g caster sugar
450g plums (about 10), halved and stones removed
3 star anise
Place the sugar in a wide pan with 175ml of water and bring to the boil, stirring until the sugar dissolves.
Add the plum halves and star anise and leave to poach gently for 10-15 minutes until softened but still holding their shape.
Serve warm or cold at breakfast, lunch or dinner time or anywhere in between.
Other fruits perfect for poaching include pears, peaches, apricots, figs, berries, pineapple, mango and rhubarb. Poaching time will vary depending on the size and softness of the fruit.
Besides star anise try flavouring the sugar syrup with other spices like cardamon or cinnamon, a split vanilla pod, orange or lime zest, herbs like mint, rosemary or tarragon, lavender or even lemongrass, ginger and chilli.
Try liquid flavourings like poaching in fruit juice, wine or add a dash of rose water, orange blossom or grenadine or something stronger like brandy, kirsch, frangelico or amaretto.
So maybe vanilla and red wine figs, cardamon apricots or ginger and lemongrass mango...
TOP TIP: keep any leftover fruity flavoured syrup to use in your cocktails!