What’s up using peaches in the winter? They aren’t in season, so what is The Goddess thinking? Well, she’s thinking that frozen fruit is a blessing and prolongs the seasons. What could be more surprising and delicious than peaches at Christmas? Freezer are such a wonderful luxury. I always have on hand some frozen peaches, nectarines, pineapple, blueberries, raspberries…well, you get the idea. Frozen fruit works great, sometimes even better than fresh, when the fruit in question is not in season, as in this dessert. You don’t even have to thaw the peaches. Straight out of the freezer works great here. Toss on the spices, zest and salt, give it a stir. Then, into the skillet with some butter. A quick sauté, add the sugar and cook for a couple of minutes, until the juices thicken and reduce. You don’t even need a pie plate. You just pop a refrigerated pie crust (usually near the juice and dairy section) on top of the peaches. Don’t worry how the crust looks, because we’re going to flip this over to serve, after it comes out of the oven. Once you get that crust in place, slide the skillet into the preheated oven and bake until the crust is nicely browned, the peaches are tender and the juices are thickened. Run a table knife around the edge to loosen the pastry, then place a plate on top and invert. Be careful, because that skillet is still hot…really hot. I’m sure my fingerprints will return someday, so trust me on this heat thing, okay?
The guava preserves are slightly exotic, with sweet and slightly sour properties. It’s wonderful on scones with clotted cream. So, for this creation, the melted guava preserves add a nice, somewhat exotic touch. If you can’t find guava preserves, feel free to use orange marmalade or peach preserves, if you prefer. In truth, you really don’t need to use the preserves at all, but they do add such a lovely shine to the finished tarte, it’s a shame not to.
This is a quick little number to have in your repertoire, because you can have this dessert, hot out of the oven in around 30 minutes. This was a last minute idea for me, and it was a really nice surprise.
Winter Peach Tarte Tartin with Guava Glaze
- 1 single crust pie pastry (purchased, refrigerated crust is fine)
- 1 (1 lb) package frozen peach slices, unthawed
- Finely shredded zest of 1 lemon (I used a Meyer lemon)
- 2 tablespoons peach schnapps (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon Vietnamese cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon finely shredded fresh gingerroot
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh mint, very finely minced (orange mint is lovely)
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- large pinch kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1/4 cup guava preserves, melted
- 2 tablespoon finely chopped toasted pecans
- Bleu cheese crumbles (see NOTE)
- 1 teaspoon finely minced fresh sage or thyme leaves (see NOTE)
Remove the pie crust from the fridge at least 15 minutes before using; set aside.
Place the peaches in a bowl; add the lemon zest, spices, sage and salt. Stir until combined.
Preheat the oven to 425°F. Heat an oven-proof skillet over medium high heat. Add the butter. When melted, dump the peaches into the pan; toss to coat with the butter. Cook for 2 minutes, then sprinkle evenly with the sugar. Toss to coat and continue simmering until the liquid thickens slightly. Remove the pan from the stove. Plop the dough on top of the peaches, tucking the dough around the edges. Don’t worry how it looks, as your won’t see it anyway. Make 2 or 3 slits near the center. Slide the pan in the oven; bake for 5 minutes. Lower the heat to 375°F and continue to bake for 20 minutes. The crust should be slightly browned, the peaches will be tender and the juices with be slightly caramelized.
Loosen the edges with a table knife. Place a plate over the skillet; turn in one motion, but be careful as that skillet is very, very hot. Push the peaches into place if some stick to the bottom of the skillet. Drizzle the melted guava preserves over the peaches and sprinkle with the pecans. Set aside for at least 10 minutes. Cut into wedges and serve with whipped cream or ice cream.
NOTE: The bleu cheese and fresh sage or thyme may be added, if you wish to serve this as a first course, with a salad, or simply as a savory addition to an appetizer buffet. Bacon might also be a nice addition…it’s bacon, right?
You may use nectarines, instead of peaches. You may substitute orange zest for lemon zest, as well. If you prefer, use orange marmalade, peach preserves or apricot preserves instead of the guava preserves.
Winter Peach Tarte Tartin with Guava Glaze Recipe©Marcia Lahens 2016. All rights reserved.
The Latin Lover isn’t a big fan of whipped cream. Crazy, huh? But, he wanted to have a couple of slices of sharp cheddar on the side. So, why not? Cheese is good with apple pie, so why not peach pie, too? Turns out to be delicious. I opted for the whipped cream, but I’m thinkin’ cheese with my “breakfast” slice.