Peaches come and go in this house like water in the summer, but somehow they rarely make it into any dishes. I find myself eating them while standing over the sink so I don’t get peach juice all over the place. Before I even realize it, I’ve eaten every peach I had bought to add to a salad, grill or turn into one of a million peach dessert recipes I have (but have yet to actually make). I think part of my lack of peach preparing follow through is laziness, but a bigger part of it is that I really like fresh peaches much better than cooked peaches. I think I’ve finally found my happy place with this creamy bourbon peach tart. I mean, it’s got fresh peaches and bourbon in it…could it get any better than that?
I’m really proud of myself. I’ve actually managed to make two things with peaches this summer: this peach tart and the peach preserves I posted about a couple of weeks ago. Hey, sometimes it’s the little things that get you going. Considering everything that I’ve had going on this summer, I’ll take any little victory (even just the perceived one’s) I can get.
I had actually set out to make little bourbon peach hand pies with this latest batch of peaches I had picked up, but the thought of all that work making pie crust just wasn’t something I wanted to do. Plus, the peaches that I had picked up were so delicious as they were, I didn’t really want to do anything to change them. So I decided not to.
As far as peach dessert recipes go this one is not only easy, but it really lets the flavor of the peaches shine through (so you want to make sure that the fruit that you use in this recipe is at its peak). The crust is so easy you could practically make it with your eyes closed. I used crushed vanilla wafers (the wafers from Trader Joe’s have actual vanilla beans in them), butter and sugar. So it’s a crust that is a whole lot easier than pie dough.
While this is an easy peach tart, it’s also a bit on the decadent side. In the middle of the crunchy crust and juicy peach topping is a creamy and richly flavored layered of mascarpone cheese. Just because it’s summer doesn’t mean you shouldn’t indulge a little.
To top it all off, the big juicy chunks of peaches are macerated in some sugar, bourbon and Cointreau. Kinda gives a whole new meaning to fruit cocktail doesn’t it?
Of course I had made the mistake of telling Craig we were going to have pie for dessert that night. While you would think he’d be thrilled to see a dessert of any kind awaiting him, a serious look of consternation washed over his face. You see, he (being of the very literal kind) does not take to flights of whimsy very well. Changes like this are a cause of concern for him. After going through a full blown explanation of the fresh peach recipes that he’s happily consumed and that this would be another, he reluctantly began eating the tart. He then proceeded to have a piece for breakfast AND dinner for the next 3 days.
What’s your favorite peach recipe for the summer?
If it works for one, it might work with all.
Recipe: Bourbon Peach Tart
For Peach Topping
- 1 1/2 – 2 Pounds Peaches (peeled, pitted and diced)
- 2 Tablespoons Sugar
- 2 Tablespoons Bourbon
- 1 Tablespoon Cointreau
- 1/8 Teaspoon Lemon Juice
- 1 1/2 Cups Vanilla Wafers
- 3 Tablespoons Sugar
- 4 Tablespoons Butter (melted)
- 8 Ounces Marscarpone Cheese
- 1/8 Teaspoon Almond Extract
- 2 Tablespoons Powdered Sugar
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit.
- In a large bowl add all ingredients and stir to combine.
- Let stand until ready to make tart. If not making until next day, cover and chill until ready to use.
- Place cookies in food processor and buzz until they are pulverized.
- Add sugar and butter to crushed cookies and buzz in food processor again until well combined.
- Dump crumb mixture into 8 inch tart or springform pan (something with a removable bottom) and pat mixture evenly onto pan bottom and sides.
- Place pan on baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes.
- Remove from oven and let cool.
- In a medium bowl add mascarpone, almond extract and powdered sugar.
- Use a hand mixer to beat ingredients until well blended and soft peaks form.
- Cover and chill for 2 hours.
- Remove cheese mixture from refrigerator and spoon into cooled crust.
- Spread the mixture evenly in the crust and smooth top.
- Carefully pour peach topping onto the cheese layer and spread evenly.
- Cut and Serve.
To easily peel peaches: Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Drop peaches in (don’t crowd the pan) and turn them in the water for 30 seconds. Remove them and let cool until you can handle them. The skins should slip right off with just a little rubbing.
I used the vanilla wafers mentioned, but you can use any vanilla wafers you would like.
If you wish to leave out the alcohol, you can. The tart will still taste great.
Preparation time: 30 minute(s)
Cooking time: 15 minute(s)
Diet type: Vegetarian
Number of servings (yield): 8
Culinary tradition: USA (General)