Wednesday/ a Frenchman’s dessert

I had the P and the E for a dessert (5,5) in my latest giant crossword puzzle, and so I needed to solve P_E_ _ |_ _ _ _ _ .

Hmm .. might it be PEACH MELBA? I thought ..
.. but then I had to do a lot of legwork to verify that it fit with the cryptic clue.
I only knew about peach melba (peaches and raspberry sauce with vanilla ice cream – I had to look this up, as well), but nothing of its history.

I needed a dessert (5, 5). ‘Cheap’ was a clue for P-E-A-C-H. Italian island was a clue for ‘E-L-B-A’. Frenchman was a reference to the inventor of peach melba: Auguste Escoffier. (He created it for Australian soprano Nellie Melba). Voila!
It also turned out, I had an Australian bank note (AUS $100) that featured Nellie Melba (born Helen Porter Mitchell; 19 May 1861 – 23 Feb. 1931). She was one of the most famous singers of the late Victorian era & early 20th century. She took the pseudonym “Melba” from Melbourne, her home town. [Wikipedia]

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