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Cedar-Plank Honey-Bourbon Nectarines

Serves: Makes 4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 cedar planks


  • ⅔ cup bourbon
  • ¼ cup honey
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 ripe but firm nectarines, pitted and quartered
  • ½ tablespoon lemon juice


Procedures:

Cedar wood imparts a lush, smoky aroma and flavor. When cooking with planks, they need to be immersed in water at least an hour prior to grilling. A water-soaked plank produces a maximum smoke flavor and is more resistant to charring on the grill.

Fully emerge cedar planks in cold water, at least an hour prior to cooking

In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the bourbon, honey and pepper. Bring to the boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer until the liquid has reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and let cool.

Arrange the nectarines, flesh side up, in a dish just enough to hold them in one layer and brush with lemon juice. Use a silicone brush to lightly coat the nectarines with half of the honey-bourbon mixture and allow to marinate for at least 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Prepare a moderate charcoal fire or preheat a gas grill to medium. Close grill lid and preheat to around 375°F. Alternatively, preheat an oven to 375°F and place a rack in the center.

Remove the soaked cedar plank from the water and place on a grill rack. Close the grill and allow the board to heat for a few minutes until it begins to smoke or crackle. If using a plank for the first time, season the plank by placing it on a preheated grill for 2 minutes, turning once. Lightly toasting the plank on both sides will intensify its smoky flavor and prevent warping. When the plank starts crackling, it’s ready for cooking.

Using tongs, arrange the nectarines, cut side up, on the cedar plank. Cover the grill, or close the oven, and cook until nectarines are hot and tender, about 5 minutes.

To serve: Remove the plank from the grill or oven and transfer to a dessert plate. Drizzle with remaining honey-bourbon mixture and garnish with a dollop of freshly whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Tested and perfected in the Sur la Table kitchen

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