- 1⁄2 cup ground almonds
- 6 egg yolks
- 1 Tbs. cornstarch
- 1⁄2 cup sugar
- 2 cups milk
- 1/4 tsp. almond extract
- Tiny pinch of salt
Ingredients for the peaches:
- 6 firm yet ripe peaches, about 2 lb. total
- 3 to 4 Tbs. grand marnier
- 2 to 3 Tbs. sugar
- Fresh mint sprigs for garnish
In a heavy saucepan, whisk together the egg yolks, cornstarch and sugar, then gradually whisk in the milk and the ground almonds until thoroughly blended. Place over medium heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon and leaves a clear trail when a finger is drawn through it, 7 to 10 minutes; do not let it boil. Place in a larger bowl partially filled with ice water and let cool, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes. Stir in the almond extract and salt. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Preheat an oven to 400°F.
To prepare the peaches, using a small, sharp knife, score a line around the equator of each peach. Have ready a large bowl three-fourths full of ice water. Bring a large saucepan three-fourths full of water to a boil over high heat. Submerge as many peaches as will fit in the pan without crowding them. Cover and boil until the skins start to split, about 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the peaches to the ice water. Using your fingertips or the knife, carefully peel the peaches. Repeat with any remaining peaches.
Place the peaches in a baking dish just large enough to accommodate them without touching, drizzle evenly with the grand marnier and sprinkle evenly with the sugar. Add water to a depth of about 1/4 inch. Bake until the sugar caramelizes and the peaches are just tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, 25 to 30 minutes; they should keep their shape. Remove and let cool to room temperature.
Place the peaches on individual plates and drizzle with some of the juices from the baking dish. Drizzle the almond crème anglaise in a pool surrounding each peach. Garnish with mint sprigs, almonds and serve.
Serve with a floral, aromatic white wine, such as Viognier from Condrieu, or a bracing Armagnac.