The end of summer is the ideal time of year to get your fill of ripe fruit like peaches, which are at their peak right now. This is the first year that our peach tree has produced fruit and while a critter got to a few of them before we did, we turned two beautiful ones into a special dessert of Peach Crisp.
To really show off the fruit, I simply cut it in half and tucked the buttery-crisp filling right inside for an easy weeknight treat that my family loved. Bigger peaches make this method a little easier since they give you more space for the topping, but even if yours are on the smaller side, you’ll want to hollow out the insides a bit more with a melon baller after removing the pit. This will make sure that the topping stays put while baking. I used two large peaches, half of the filling mixture from this original Peach Crisp recipe, and took the brown sugar down to just one tablespoon since I knew that the fruit and the graham crackers would lend sweetness. Pack it into the center of each peach pretty tightly and nestle the halves into a greased baking pan.
After baking for about 30 minutes, the crisp topping was golden brown and the peaches were tender—and the house smelled pretty amazing…just like peach pie but with a fraction of the work! I served these for dessert topped with a dollop of plain whole milk yogurt, though vanilla ice cream would not be out of place here. Try them for a dinner party or a weeknight dessert when fruit is ripe and your family deserves a sweet treat.
Find the full recipe for Peach Crisp here.
Peaches are at their prime across the country right now, so if you see locally grown ones at a farm stand, farmer’s market, or the grocery store, scoop them up! We live in Iowa, so our local peaches are from Missouri and Colorado and they have been amazingly delicious lately. I tend to overbuy peaches when they are good, so I put a few to use in these Peach Pies as a family treat this past weekend.
Peaches should smell intensely peachy and should just slightly give when you pick them up—and make sure to keep them in a separate bag on the way home from the farmer’s market or store to avoid them becoming bruised. I used two very ripe peaches in this recipe as a simple substitution for the canned filling in the original recipe. I diced them and tossed with 2 teaspoons cornstarch and 2 teaspoons sugar. I let the fruit sit while I prepared the crust.
I’m usually a little intimidated by pastry, especially when making little pastry sandwiches is involved, but this actually came together easier than I expected. I halved the recipe to make a smaller batch, added 1 teaspoon cinnamon, and used a stick of very cold butter instead of shortening with just 1-2 tablespoons of cold water. I also made it in the food processor, which helps the crust come together quickly and easily—you can tell when you’ve added enough water since it starts to obviously clump together. Once poured out, formed into a disc, and wrapped in plastic wrap, I let it chill in the fridge while I preheated the oven.
I used 1 heaping teaspoon filling in the smaller flower pies and 1 heaping tablespoon in the slightly larger pie pops and once I had everything assembled, chilled them again for 10 minutes in the fridge. The colder the pastry is when it goes into the oven, the better the results. I thought that the little hand pies would be easier for my daughter to eat than the pops and she adored the flower shape. She was barely awake from her afternoon nap when she grabbed one off the counter!
The peach flavor is intense and the butter pastry is flaky and delicious. These little pies pair really well with a cold glass of milk, strong coffee, or vanilla ice cream, and they taste just as good the next day. I can’t wait to make this recipe again!
Get the full recipe for Peach Pies here.
I’m on a peach frenzy. It’s once year for very short time that I get to eat them everyday—so eat them I will— plain, baked, grilled, pureed into a popsicle, in a cocktail. Got another suggestion—leave a comment.
Until then I’m sharing this Peach and Berry Upside Cake with you guys with one minor tweak. The original recipe calls for ½ cup of mixed berries, but since I didn’t have any on hand I used cherries. With that, I decided to puree the cherries then ribbon it through the cake.
Either version works well, so use what you have. If you do decide to go with the cherry version use 6oz. (about 1 heaping cup), stem, pit and puree it. Transfer it to a plastic bag and snip a corner off. Spoon your batter over the peaches, drizzle someone pureed cherries on top and then spoon more batter on top (do not stir the cherry puree into the batter). And that’s it—two popular summer stone fruits in one awesome cake.