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Thursday
Sep082011

Peach Tart

 

Labor Day weekend was a blur of trail running, mountain biking, and enjoying the last few days of summer in Colorado.  It also included a relaxing BBQ at my parent's house a huge group of friends with whom I grew up and some of their parents.  It was wonderful to catch up, enjoy great food and drinks, take a tour of my parent's incredible garden, play cornhole and enjoy the sunshine.  I was assigned dessert duty and I made chocolate chip cookie ice cream sandwiches and this peach tart.  I'm partial to fruit desserts and it doesn't get much better than peaches in Colorado at the end of summer!

I read about this tart on Amanda Hesser's food blog, Food 52.  I've read Ms. Hesser's book Cooking for Mr. Latte, and have posted about her before, but I had yet to try one of her recipes.  After how good this tart was, I look forward to making many, many more dishes she suggests!  This tart had a crumbly, flavorful crust (perhaps the olive oil makes the difference?) and the peaches were sweetened only just enough to really accentuate their flavor.  The best part about this tart is that you need only a bowl to prepare the crust (no mixer necessary) and you could be creative should you find yourself without a tart pan and make this in another dish.  The only change I made from the original recipe was to reduce the amount of sugar that coats the peaches from 3/4 cup to 1/2 cup.  The tart was still plenty sweet.

Peach Tart
Yield - 1 11" tart that serves 8
Adapted very slightly from Amanda Hesser at Food 52 

 

  • 1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/4 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 1/4 cup mild olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons whole milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter
  • 3 to 5 small ripe peaches, pitted and thickly sliced (about 1/2-inch wide)
  1. Heat the oven to 425 degrees. In a mixing bowl, stir together 1 1/2 cups flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon sugar. Stirring enables the salt and sugar to sift the flour, so you don’t need to sift it in advance. In a small bowl, whisk together the oils, milk and almond extract. Pour this mixture into the flour mixture and mix gently with a fork, just enough to dampen; do not over work it. Then, transfer the dough to an 11-inch tart pan (you can use a smaller one if needed), and use your hands to pat out the dough so it covers the bottom of the pan, pushing it up the sides to meet the edge. This will work if you pat firmly and confidently, but not if you curl your fingertips into the dough. It should be about 1/ 8-inch thick all around; trim and discard excess dough.

  2. In a bowl, combine 1/2 cup sugar, 2 tablespoons flour, 1/4 teaspoon salt and the butter. (If your peaches are especially juicy, add 1 tablespoon additional flour.) Using your fingers, pinch the butter into the dry ingredients until crumbly, with a mixture of fine granules and tiny pebbles.

  3. Starting on the outside, arrange the peaches overlapping in a concentric circle over the pastry; fill in the center in whatever pattern makes sense. The peaches should fit snugly. Sprinkle the pebbly butter mixture over top (it will seem like a lot). Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until shiny, thick bubbles begin enveloping the fruit and the crust is slightly brown. Cool on a rack. Serve warm or room temperature, preferably with generous dollops of whipped cream.

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