Summer is almost over but there's still time to enjoy some delicious peaches. There's just something so incredibly intoxicating about the scent of a ripe peach. Its gorgeous aroma, so sweet and fragrant, just makes you wanna sink your teeth into its juicy flesh. I get so giddy when I see a beautiful display of these fuzzy fruits. I'm sure the produce guys think I'm a little weird when I'm picking out peaches. I love smelling them. I can't help it. You should really give it a try. The next time you're at the grocery store or the farmer's market, stop and smell the peaches. Just take a deep breath and inhale all the sweet fragrance. Aaaaaaaaaaaah...now that's what I call aromatherapy.
I've been happily enjoying peaches this summer, but not so much in dessert form. I haven't really been in a baking mood lately. It's been so hot and humid during the day, it just zaps my energy to even be in the kitchen. And it's not unusual for me to be baking at night either, but lately it's been too warm to do that too. Instead, I've been eating peaches just as is, which is probably the best way to enjoy them, or along with some Greek yogurt and honey.
You really can't go wrong with fresh peaches but since the weather has cooled down a little bit, I've been thinking about baking with them. Maybe I can bake a peach pie or a spiced cake with peaches and raisins. Or maybe even poach them in syrup and make a classic Peach Melba. But something I discovered in the fridge this weekend pointed me to another direction.
I'd forgotten that I had a package of puff pastry in the freezer so when I found it, I thought well, maybe I can make something like the apple tartlets I did a couple of years ago. I served them instead of apple pie for Thanksgiving and everybody absolutely loved them. Maybe peaches and puff pastry will a be winning combination too. So I cut the puff pastry into squares, laid the peaches in the middle, sprinkled them with sugar and popped them in the oven. I could already tell they were gonna be delicious from the sweet aroma that filled my kitchen. Mmmmmm...so good.
I must confess, I devoured three of these as soon as they came out of the oven and I probably would have eaten more if I hadn't stopped myself. I love the combination of flaky and buttery puff pastry with the sweet and luscious yellow peaches. Even Hubby, who as you know by now, isn't very keen on sweets, inhaled three of these in a blink of an eye. I decided I better give some of them away or else we'll finish them all. So I packed a couple of boxes and surprised my mom at work and gave some to my dear friend Maggie, who was busy baking up a storm as well.
I hope you'll make a batch of these delicious peach tartlets soon. They're so amazingly good but it takes very little effort to make them. And don't forget...stop and smell the peaches :-)
Puff Pastry Peach Tartlets
Makes 18 tartlets
Allergy note: contains wheat ingredients
1 lb yellow peaches (about 4), pitted
3 Tbs. dark brown sugar
1 Tbs. lemon juice
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
pinch of salt
1 package (2 sheets) frozen puff pastry
1/4 cup butter or allowed dairy-free margarine, melted
turbinado sugar (aka Sugar in the Raw)
honey or maple syrup for drizzling (optional)
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats.
To prepare the peaches:
Slice peaches to about 1/2 inch thickness. Coat with brown sugar, lemon juice, ground ginger, ground cinnamon and salt.
To make the tartlets:
Let the puff pastry sheets thaw at almost room temperature (about 20 minutes). Cut each puff pastry sheet into 9 equal squares. Layer the sliced peaches in the center of each square. Brush edges with melted butter or margarine then sprinkle with turbinado sugar.
Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool then drizzle with honey or maple syrup if desired.