Big Dave's orchard, Pegasus, is in the Coal Valley in Tasmania where the unique cool climate helps slow the growth of the fruit, which then enables them to ripen for longer on the tree. What that means is the apricots are sweeter and juicier than fruit produced on the mainland.......... I'm so lucky!
I started with the Goldrich variety and simply poached them in a light sugar syrup. These will be used over the coming months in my classic chicken with braised leek and apricot, frangipane tarts, upside down cakes and ice creams.
With the More Park variety I cooked them up in equal amounts of sugar and a squeeze of lemon juice to make the most divine apricot conserve.
Last, but certainly not least, the little Orange Reds were used for a very large batch of my apricot paste. The perfect accompaniment to goats cheese, cheddar or my chicken liver pate with green peppercorn. Delicious!!!
Simmone's Apricot Paste
1 cup water 250ml
1 cup wine 250ml
1 cup sugar 400g
2 bay leaves
Juice from 1 lemon
- Combine all ingredients except the apricot and bring to a simmer.
- Add apricot halves and gently simmer for 1 hour or until the fruit becomes transparent.
- Remove the bay leaves and process the fruit to a smooth paste. Pour into a lined and greased cake tin. Cover and refrigerate until set.