Peaches are Magic

Summer appeared all at once at the farmers’ market today. It happened in the form a rainbow explosion of fruit--and now that I live in central Illinois, I am aware of how special that is. There are not a lot of fruit growers here, so when it shows up at the market you have seize the opportunity and if you can, overindulge a bit.

So I did. My trip through the downtown Champaign Farmers’ Market happened after a fast, but intense thunderstorm that left tents tangled and farmers soaked. But the skies cleared and the smiles returned, and there was so much fruit. I came home with blackberries, peaches, pears, nectarines, and late strawberries. (And then there were the tomatoes, but I’ll get to that later, in a pizza post.)

The thing about fresh fruit, that is actually picked when it is ripe, is that the flavor is unparalleled. It is just a different thing than the stuff you buy at a commercial grocery store. But it also means that you have to work fast--no letting it sit around on the counter for a week (not a problem at our house). I made myself stop eating berries so that I could do something special with them. And for tonight that meant tart. A peach, berry tart with chevre, and an almond crust.

Peach Berry Tart

Ingredients

1 Cup almond meal (or almond flour)

¼ Cup honey + 1 tablespoon honey reserved for glaze

1 Tablespoon butter

¼ Cup water

⅓ Cup chevre (soft, spreadable goat milk cheese)

2-3 Peaches, sliced

1 Cup blackberries


Instructions

Make the crust first:

  1. Combine the almond meal, 1 tablespoon of honey, and one teaspoon of sugar in a bowl and mix with a fork (if necessary, use your fingers to break up big lumps), it should be a slightly sticky crumbly texture

  2. Press the mixture gently into a 4” mini tart pan

  3. Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 15 minutes

While the crust is in the oven, make the glaze:

  1. Combine ¼ cup honey, water, and 4-5 berries in a small saucepan over medium heat

  2. When honey is melted into the water, mash the berries into the mixture, and remove from the heat

  3. Set the mixture aside

  4. Optional: You can strain the berry chunks out of the mixture if you like

Assemble the tart:

  1. Crumble the chevre into the tart crust, and press gently into a thin layer at the bottom of the frust

  2. Arrange the peaches and berries decoratively in the tart crust

  3. Drizzle the glaze over the fruit

  4. Refrigerate until you are ready to serve, then carefully remove from the tart pan