I've had this jar of truffle honey for a while now. I'm a fan of truffles, when you can weasel them out of the chef. I had a special white truffle dinner at The Toque in Napa Valley and the chef actually came out and shaved a hunk of truffle all over my plate, after I kept bugging the waiter. It was a wonderfully decadent experience, however - have you ever burbed truffle? It quite quickly loses it's appeal. I'm not doing that again - a little goes a LONG way.
This honey has an odd flavor, at first taste - like licking a tire, (long story) but once it mellows out, very lovely. I really didn't know what to do with it, other than take a taste now and then and think of bicycles. I did read somewhere that it would be a good idea to smear it on some toasted bread, with some sparky, stinky cheese. That was OK tasting, but I really thought it could benefit from some heat. And some benign and non-assertive vegetable. How about those orange beets, I thought? (It's really some sort of circus in my brain as I ponder the stuff in the refrigerator - monkeys on bicycles, wearing a fez.) And those peaches that I've haven't had time to fiddle with - I was going to do a chicken with balsamic roasted peaches, but the chicken went south....very south. Like, maybe all the way to El Salvador. On a bus. With goats. Whew.
Now, my peaches were very ripe. I do think if you consider roasting them, it would be a nice technique with less ripe peaches. Mine got a bit mushy. Also, I would consider a light brushing of the honey on those beets, before roasting. The flavor of the honey drizzled on the finished beets was outstanding.
But ultimately, this was a really nice flavor combination. Nothing fancy (well, that Italian truffle honey cost enough to make the Spousal Unit yell at me using bad
words), but flavorful and satisfying.
Roasted Orange Beets and Truffle-Honey White Peaches over Sautéed Greens
1 bunch of beets, orange or yellow is best
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 white peaches, halved, pitted, but leave skin on
2-3 tablespoons honey (I used an Italian honey, infused with black truffle bits)
1 teaspoon peanut oil
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 375 degrees
1. Chop off tops of beets, cut into bite-sized pieces (removing any tough leaves) and set aside. Clean and trim beets, leaving them whole with skin on.
2. Place beets into small pan (I used a heavy bread pan) and toss with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Roast for 45 minutes or so, until a knife inserted into the largest beet slides in easily.
3. Meanwhile, brush cut sides of peaches with some of the honey. Heat the peanut oil over moderately high heat in a heavy, oven-proof skillet. Place peaches cut side down into skillet and caramelize those babies, until just turning brown. Place in oven, along side of beets for the last 6-8 minutes of roasting.
4. While the beets and peaches are finishing their roasting, heating the remaining olive oil in a sauté pan. Add garlic, sauté for a couple of minutes. Add chopped greens and sauté until nicely wilted and tender.
5. Serve the beets and peaches over the wilted greens and drizzle with a little more of the honey.
"Really, really, really want to shake your tree"