Fresh peaches are one of the joys of summer, and the peach season is short but delicious. This peach tart, made with a touch of cinnamon and nutmeg is a wonderful way to showcase this irresistible fruit.
Warm Peach Tart
Sweet Tart Pastry:
1½ cups all-purpose flour, plus additional for work surface
¼ cup granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
½ cup unsalted butter, cold, cut into ½ inch pieces
1 large egg yolk, reserve egg white
2 to 3 tablespoons whipping (heavy) cream
8 medium to large ripe peaches (about 3 pounds, makes about 6 cups sliced)
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
2/3 cup granulated sugar, plus additional for sprinkling on cutout pastry shapes
2 tablespoons cornstarch
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
Tip: Use a citrus juicer for freshly squeezed juice.
Sweet Tart Pastry:
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine flour, sugar, and salt. With a pastry blender or two knives, cut the butter into the flour mixture until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- In a small bowl, stir together the egg yolk and 2 tablespoons cream. Pour the egg mixture into the flour mixture and stir until the dough comes together and can be formed into a ball. Tip: If the dough seems too dry and is not forming into a ball, add another tablespoon of cream. Flatten the ball into a 6 inch disc, wrap with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Tip: if refrigerated for more than 30 minutes the pastry will become too cold to roll without cracking. If it becomes too cold, let pastry sit at room temperature 15 to 20 minutes before rolling.
- On a lightly floured pastry mat or pastry board, and using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll the chilled pastry to a 13x10 inch rectangle and fit into one 11½x7½x1 inch tart pan with a removable bottom. (Or, roll into a 12 inch circle and use one 10 inch round tart pan with a removable bottom.) Press pastry gently against the sides of the tart pan. Trim excess pastry to ½ inch; reserve the trimmings to make decorative pastry shapes. Fold the edge of the pastry under and press gently around the rim to seal the edge, allowing pastry to extend 1/8 to ¼ inch above the top of the pan to allow for shrinkage. Leave the border plain for a rustic look or crimp as desired. Lightly prick the bottom and sides with a fork at three-fourth or one inch intervals. Place on a baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate tart shell until firm, at least 30 minutes.
- Re-roll the pastry trimmings to a 1/8 inch thickness. Using a small knife or cookie cutter, cut pastry into desired shapes such as peach and leaf shapes. Use a small kitchen knife to make decorative marks in the pastry. Transfer shapes to an ungreased baking sheet and refrigerate until firm.
- While tart shell is refrigerating, preheat oven to 375 degrees F, allowing 15 to 20 minutes for the oven to preheat before baking.
- Remove chilled tart shell from refrigerator. Leaving the tart shell on the baking sheet, bake 20 to 25 minutes or until the edges of the crust turn a light golden brown. Remove from oven and cool completely on a wire cooling rack.
Tip: If using pie weights, line the chilled pie shell with parchment paper, leaving a one or two inch overhang. Fill with pie weights or dried beans or rice to keep the crust from puffing up and shrinking. Bake 15 minutes or until the edges of the crust are just beginning to turn golden. Remove the parchment paper and pie weights, return to oven, and continue baking another 5 to 6 minutes or until a light golden brown all over.
- Remove pastry shapes from refrigerator. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush with beaten egg white and sprinkle with a little granulated sugar. Bake about 10 minutes or until a light golden brown. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool.
- Peel, pit, and slice the peaches into 16ths. Place the sliced peaches in a large bowl and sprinkle with the lemon juice. Sprinkle 2/3 cup of sugar over the peaches and toss gently to mix evenly. Let the peach mixture sit at room temperature 30 to 60 minutes to develop the juices.
- Transfer the peaches and their juices to a colander suspended over a bowl to capture the juice. The peaches will release almost 1 cup of juice.
- Pour the juice into a small saucepan, preferably with a non-stick surface. Heat over medium-high heat to a boil; boil the juice down to about 1/3 cup or until it is thick and syrupy, occasionally swirl the juice around in the pan but don’t stir.
- While the juice is heating and boiling, transfer the peaches back to the large bowl. Sprinkle the cornstarch, cinnamon, and nutmeg over the peaches and toss gently to mix and all traces of the cornstarch have dissolved. Pour the hot cooked peach juice over the peaches; toss gently to mix.
- Place the cooled tart shell on a baking sheet; Pour the peach mixture into the tart shell. Bake 50 to 60 minutes or until the crust is lightly browned, the peach juices bubble thickly, and the peaches are tender when pierced with a small sharp knife. Remove from oven and cool on a wire rack at least 30 minutes.
- Remove the outer metal ring of the tart pan; place the tart pan on top of a large can so that the bottom balances on top of the can and the rim falls to the counter. Slide a thin metal spatula or knife between the bottom crust and the tart pan bottom to release, then slide the tart onto a serving plate, or leave the bottom of the tart pan under the tart for support.
Serving suggestion: Top tart with pastry shapes. Serve tart either when cooled to room temperature or still slightly warm. Spoon a dollop of whipped cream on top, or serve ala-mode with vanilla ice cream.
Makes 8 to 10 servings.
Better Homes and Gardens, New Baking Book, Meredith Corporation, Iowa, 1998,
Beranbaum, Rose Levy, The Pie and Pastry Bible, Scribner, New York, 1998
Description: Single Crust Fruit Tart
Pan: One 11½x7½x1" Oblong Tart with Removeable Bottom, or, One 10" Round Tart
Pastry: Sweet Tart
Pastry Prep: Baked
Oven Temp: 375o
Prep Time: 2½ hours
Pastry BakeTime: 20 to 25 Minutes
Filling Bake Time: 50 to 60 Minutes
Serves: 8 to 10
Storage: Covered, Cool Place or Refrigerate
Recipe Type: Tart, Pastry, Peach, Fourth of July
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