Nectarines are a smooth-skinned variety of peach and can be white- or yellow-fleshed, free-stoned, or cling-stoned (where the firm-textured flesh clings to the stone). White nectarines have a more delicate, sweeter flavour than yellow ones.
August and September are the best time to buy nectarines from Europe.
Nectarines don’t need peeling, but if you want to peel them for use in a pie, cover the ripe fruit with boiling water, leaves for 15 seconds, then drain and peel. If poaching nectarines, don’t peel them as their skins will colour the syrup a beautiful rose colour. Although nectarines can be used in any peach recipe, their smooth skin makes them particularly useful sliced in sweet or savoury salads, or halved and either baked or grilled. The stronger flavour of yellow-fleshed nectarines makes them better suited to savoury salads, and cooked dishes such as nectarine tart and poached nectarine with vanilla ice cream.
Article by Sybil Kapoor
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