Peach Melba


Have you ever had a weird experience in the grocery store before? Sure, I think probably everyone has at some point or other. One of my all-time favorites, as frustrating as it may be, is when I’m in my invisible mode. That’s right, I have the ability to make myself invisible.


“A woman I had never seen before asked me what she could make for dessert.”


The only problem is that I have no idea where the secret button is or what the words I need to speak are? Maybe it has something to do with the electromagnetic field that must surround me. Anyone who knows me knows how much trouble I have with my cell phones and computers and I’m convinced it is due to some field that surrounds just me. Maybe I’m just getting lucky and picking the grocery cart that’s unseen through the user’s eye, creates that invisible bubble. Oh man, maybe I’m the boy in the bubble, but I’m a man?

There was one day I was looking for some particular things for a dinner and I must have been walked into or run into with a cart at least eight times, and I mean full on crash-test-dummy types of crashed into. I couldn’t find what I was looking for and went to another store. Walking in, I saw a friend checking out and immediately asked if he could see me. He assured me he could and I walked into the produce section and instantaneously got hit from both the front and side with cart in the middle of a completely straight aisle. I ran back and asked him again, and he said he was positive he could see me.

Anyway, the other day I was again in produce and was walking by the fruits when a woman I had never seen before asked me out of the blue what she could make for dessert. I thought that kind of weird to ask a stranger, but she then said she recognized me from that itty bitty picture in the magazine. I was so impressed; I see myself in the mirror every morning and wouldn’t recognize me, and I suggested Peach Melba, since she was looking at fruit.

I told her the basic ingredients and got her number and told her I would have to call her after I checked my recipe. I called when I got home and found a message on my machine two days later to say “Thanks.”


Peach Melba

2 peaches

1 lemon (zest the peel into a bowl)

1 C sugar

1½ C water

1 t vanilla

4 mint leaves

1 12 oz. bag frozen raspberries

1 small jar currant jelly

¼ C sugar

2 t corn starch

2 T cold water

4 scoops vanilla ice cream

Whipped cream (optional)


Place the peaches in boiling water for about 20 seconds and then immediately into ice water. Remove the skin with a paring knife and cut in half removing the pit.

Combine the water, sugar, vanilla and juice of half the lemon, and bring to a boil. Poach the peach halves about 5 minutes or until tender and let cool on a plate. Combine raspberries, jelly, ¼ t lemon zest, 1/8 t lemon juice and half the sugar, and bring to a simmer. Let simmer for 2 minutes adding sugar to taste.

Combine the cold water and corn starch and add stirring until sauce is thickened. Let cool. Place a scoop of vanilla ice cream in a bowl. Top with peach half. Pour some Melba sauce over it, add a dollop of whipped cream and garnish with the mint leave.


Smitty is a personal chef specializing in dinner parties, cooking classes and special events. Trained under Master Chef Anton Flory at Top Notch Resort in Stowe, Vt., Smitty is known for his creative use of fresh ingredients. To read archived copies of Smitty’s column, visit or Contact him at [email protected] or (530) 412-3598.