Food Hero

Basil Peach Sangria by appetista
July 18, 2009, 4:02 am
Filed under: Appetista, cocktails, quick fix

basil peach sangria

It was Robert Frost who said that good fences make good neighbors. I always assumed that this meant you should have clearly delineated boundaries and not drag your neighbors into the family feuds, nor the other way around. But, then I read the rest of the poem, and it is the retelling of how Mr. Frost and his neighbor spend one day together each year repairing the fence between their lands. And I think perhaps the line refers to the fact that it is good to join with your neighbor, and undertake a task with mutual benefit that would be too large for either of you alone.

Last weekend I undertook such a task with my neighbor (the lovely Katy K) and we hosted a party for our coworkers. (Because Katy and I are friends, and neighbors, and coworkers all at the same time – there are precious few people in the world who can put up with that much of me, bless her soul.) Anyway, we decided to have a party in our shared backyard, and we decided to be lazy and make everyone else bring the food. All we supplied was sangria (and artichoke dip and two gallons of peach ice cream, just for kicks.) So three different sangria recipes were scouted, and three different bottles of wine were purchased, and three different sangrias were made – classic, berry, and basil peach. And by far, the best of these three was the basil peach.  And so many people liked it and asked for the recipe that I thought I would put it here, so the regular Food Hero readers could see the results and a few new people could discover Food Hero.

The sangria was so good I made it again for a boat trip when the divine Rachelle came back for a visit from Denmark. And this time I was running late and made it in 10 minutes (no kidding). So from personal experience I can swear that the whole part about cooling for an hour afterwards is purely optional – just add more ice to the glass. And without further ado, basil peach sangria.

Basil Peach Sangria

(from Gourmet July 2005)

1c loosely packed fresh basil leaves plus 8-10 sprigs.

¾ c sugar

¼ c fresh lemon juice – about one big lemon

2 cans peach nectar

1 bottle chilled dry white wine

1 large peach, peeled if desired, diced.

Put 1 cup basil leaves, sugar, and lemon juice into a small saucepan and bruise leaves by mashing with a wooden spoon. Add 1 can nectar and bring just to a simmer, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and let stand 5 minutes, then pour through a sieve into a pitcher. Discard basil leaves. Stir in wine, peach, remaining can nectar, a basil sprigs. Chill at least 1 hour. Serve over ice.

A few notes on the recipe. I bought one of the big tubs from the store and that was enough for two pitchers. I think the little flat tubs would not quite be enough, so either buy a big tub or two little tubs and plan for a few leftovers. I find peach nectar in the fruit juice aisle of the store, although sometimes it’s in with Mexican food. I really would pick a drier white wine for this – the peach nectar and the sugar give it plenty of sweetness and a sweet wine would just send it over the top. We used chardonnay.