A hint of nut­ti­ness

Landscape (UK) - - In the Kitchen -

While wait­ing for its fruit to fully ripen, the leaves of the peach tree can be used to flavour foods. Eat­ing peach leaves raw can be poi­sonous. How­ever, if steeped in milk they cre­ate a sub­tle al­mond-like flavour­ing that is safe to eat. Healthy full-grown leaves are se­lected from an un­sprayed tree. Dry leaves and those with any signs of dis­ease or blight are avoided. To make: place 250ml milk in a saucepan with ap­prox­i­mately 12 peach leaves. Bring to the boil then re­move from the heat. Leave to in­fuse for no more than 30 min­utes. Over-steep­ing re­sults in a bit­ter so­lu­tion. Reg­u­larly tast­ing the in­fu­sion as it steeps helps to gauge flavour de­vel­op­ment. Once the de­sired taste is achieved, the mix­ture is strained to re­move the leaves. The flavoured milk can then be used to make cus­tard.

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