Poached peaches with pomegranate syrup

Go fruity for dessert this summer with poached peaches

Serves 6

2 fresh pomegranates
275g caster sugar
400ml white wine
1 stick of lemongrass, bashed with
a rolling pin, or 1 pared strip of lemon peel
6 firm, ripe peaches
Rose petals, to serve

1. Cut the pomegranates in half around their equators. Fill a large bowl with cold water and drop two of the pomegranate halves in. Working below the surface of the water, use your fingers to separate the arials (seeds). Set the drained seeds aside.
2. Squeeze the remaining pomegranate halves into a bowl, as if you were squeezing lemon halves. Strain any pith and seeds out and set the juice aside.
3. Put the sugar, wine, lemongrass or peel and 400ml water in a large saucepan. Bring to the boil slowly, and simmer for 10 minutes. Cut a shallow cross in the base of each peach and add to the simmering liquid. Poach gently for about 5 minutes. -Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon. When the peaches have cooled, peel off the skins.
4. Return the skins to the pan, turn the heat up, add the pomegranate juice and boil down by at least one third. Set aside for 10 minutes, strain, then pour over the peaches. Leave until completely cool.
5. To serve, remove, halve and stone the peaches and arrange on a platter. Douse with the syrup, and shower with the pomegranate seeds and rose petals.

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