Almond-Crisped Peaches

Thursday, August 29, 2013

There are certain flavors and ingredients I can never get enough of. In college it was an ongoing joke that I'd order anything with chipotle mayo in it (that hasn't changed). Likewise, if asparagus, coconut, pineapple or peaches are involved, it's guaranteed I'll be into it.

I like the juiciness and texture of peaches. I love how sweet they always are, and they're a symbol of summer, my favorite season. Because I tend to overeat the main course, I'm usually not one for dessert. But I can't pass up peaches, and when I read Smitten Kitchen's take on single-serving almond-crisped peaches, I was sold. 

I cut the recipe in half and didn't consider the rolled oats, cinnamon or sea salt optional. I don't think you should either. They were an instrumental part of making this such a hit. 

4 ripe peaches
1/3 cup whole almonds
1/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter (cubed)
Optional extras (use them!): 1/4 cup rolled oats, 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon, pinch of sea salt

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Halve peaches and remove pits. Place fruit cut-side-up in baking dish.

In a food processor grind almonds and sugar together until coarsely ground. Add oats and other flavorings, if using, then butter, pulsing the machine until the ingredients are just blended. *

Spoon the almond mixture into the center of each peach, then press it flat. Bake 45 minutes to 1 hour until the top is brown and crisp and you can easily slice through the fruit with a fork or spoon.

Serve warm or room temperature, with creme fraiche or lightly sweetened whipped cream. 

* I don't have a food processor, so I used a blender. If you have neither, use an equivalent weight of almond meal or finely chopped almonds, stir in sugar and other ingredients. Use the same volume of butter, melted. 

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