Blueberry Peach Buckle

Labor Day… Today marks the unofficial end to the summer for most, calendar-wise though we have until the 22nd. And with temps planning to hit the high 80’s in New York this week, it doesn’t seem like summer is letting go that easy! So, if you’re craving a dessert that’s reminiscent of summer flavors and you’re still able to get fresh peaches in your neck of the woods (although frozen would work, or you could sub the peaches for apples) this Blueberry Peach Buckle is for you!

Now, you may be wondering what exactly a buckle is. I know I was when I saw this recipe. Well, it’s a fruit cake, usually made with blueberries, that has a streusel topping. When the cake bakes the batter will rise whereas the blueberries and streusel topping will weigh it down, the surface of the cake will then buckle. Truth be told, I didn’t really see this happen with the one I made.

Overall this cake was good, but, there are two things I would do different next time. I found the streusel topping to be a bit sweet so I think I would cut back on the granulated sugar and have an even amount of both sugars. Also, add in another chopped peach. I could barely taste the peach pieces in the cake. Oh, and there is a third, either omit the orange zest or add in another 1/4 teaspoon. I really didn’t get the orange essence.

A scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side did make this cake extra yummy though regardless!

 

Blueberry Peach Buckle

For The Cake:

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 2/3 cups flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1/4 teaspoon orange zest

1 large egg

1/2 cup milk*

2 cups blueberries

1 large peach, chopped

 

*I used whole milk

 

For the Streusel Topping:

1/4 cup granulated sugar

2 tablespoons light brown sugar

3 tablespoons flour

1/4 teaspoons freshly grated nutmeg

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

Pinch of salt

Vanilla ice cream, for serving

 

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 375 F. Grease an 8×8 baking dish with butter or spray with cooking spray.

Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl and set aside. In a large bowl beat the butter, sugar and orange zest together on medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg and then gradually beat in the milk with the mixer on low. Your batter may look curdled due to the milk and zest interacting. Add the flour mixture and continue to meat until well incorporated. Your batter will be thick. Fold in the blueberries and chopped peach and spread in the prepared dish.

To make the streusel, in a medium bowl combine the sugars, flour, nutmeg and salt. Work the butter in with your fingers until clumpy. Scatter it over the batter.

Bake in the preheated oven for about an hour, until a cake tested inserted in the middle comes out clean. Let cool for at least 30 minutes and then serve with the ice cream.

Recipe from Food Network

A Delicious Short-Cut Peach Pie

Short-cuts aren’t always a bad thing. When you are driving they can get you where you have to go quicker and hopefully help you avoid some traffic along the way. In our day-to-day lives they can make us a bit more efficient to get daily tasks completed. And in baking they can guarantee us a flakier crust and fruit that’s perfectly ripe for a pie!

A few weeks ago I got it in my head that I wanted to make a peach pie. I’m actually not a big fruit pie fan – I’m not that keen on fruit pie filling, especially when it’s on the runny side – but, I think the Pillsbury Pie Crust sitting in my refrigerator got me thinking. I’ve made pie crusts from scratch once or twice before but, like I said there’s nothing wrong with taking a short-cut every now and then. I went one step further with my short-cut and opted to use frozen peaches. I just wasn’t in the mood to peel and slice a few pounds of peaches.

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I combined 2 pounds of frozen sliced peaches with sugar, flour, lemon juice, cinnamon, allspice and almond extract. I decided on the almond extract after reading that many bakers used to add the nut – sometimes called a “bitter almond” –  that’s inside the pit of the peach to the pie while baking to give it an almond flavor. That practice has since diminished as it was discovered that the nut contains trace amounts of cyanide, granted you would have to eat a large quantity of them for anything to happen, but, who wants to bite down on something hard when they are enjoying a piece of pie.

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Next I unrolled one of the pie crusts and pressed it into the bottom of the pie dish.

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I then added the filling and mounded it slightly in the middle and dotted it with small pieces of unsalted butter.

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Instead of just unrolling the other pie crust on top of the pie I decided to give it a little pizazz with a lattice pattern that wouldn’t require weaving. First I sliced the top pie crust into 6 1-inch strips…

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And then divided those strips in half to end up with a total of 12 1/2-inch strips.

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I laid five strips across the pie, doing my best to equally space them

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Then I laid four strips across the previous strips diagonally.

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And after some trimming and crimping, voila, a simple lattice pattern.

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I then placed the pie on a baking sheet in a 400 F preheated oven for about 25 minutes. I then lowered the oven to 375 F and baked the pie for about another hour. Prior to lowering the temperature I brushed the top of the pie with an egg wash to ensure a nice golden brown color. I kept a close eye on the pie and when I noticed the rims of it were browning a tad bit too much I covered it with aluminum foil. I knew it was time to take the pie out of the oven when the filling was bubbling.

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After letting it cool it was time to slice into it…

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And I happy to say that the pie was a perfect consistency… Not too watery and not too dry! It was a definite winner!

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Peach Pie – Adapted from here

1 box refrigerated pie crusts, softened as directed on box

Filling:

2 pounds of sliced and peeled frozen peaches (Use frozen, do not thaw)

3/4 cup sugar

1/2 cup flour (I doubled the amount the original recipe called for to allot for the water the frozen fruit would release while baking)

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon all spice

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

1 large egg

Directions:

1. Preheat the oven to 400 F.

2. Make the filling by mixing the peaches in a large bowl with the sugar, flour, lemon juice, cinnamon, all spice and almond extract.

3. Unroll one pie crust and place in an ungreased 9-inch pie plate. Add the filling, mounding it slightly in the center and dot with the butter.

4. Unroll the second crust and dust it lightly with flour and cut it into 1/2-inch wide strips. Lay half of the strips on the pie in one direction, leaving about a 1-inch space between each strip. Lay the remaining strips on top, crossing them diagonally to make a faux lattice pattern. Trim the edges of the strips leaving a small overhang and crimp the edges into the bottom crust with your fingers.

5. Place the pie on a baking sheet and place it in the oven for 20 minutes. Lower the temperature of the oven to 375 F and brush the pie with an egg wash (beat the egg with a tablespoon of water). Bake for another hour until the filling it bubbly. If you notice the out crusts of the pie is browning too quickly cover it loosely with aluminum foil. Once baked, transfer to a rack to cool completely before slicing. Store remaining pie in the refrigerator.

 

Peach Streusel Cake

I tend to rip recipes out of magazines and file them away for quite some time before actually trying them. I recently made a turkey meatloaf following a recipe from a 2008 issue of a magazine. I wish I had made it sooner… It was quite good. So, when I was looking to make a cake to give as an anniversary treat for a friends’ parents I turned to a Peach Streusel Cake recipe that I had ripped out from a 2011 issue of Food & Wine magazine.

I started the cake by making the streusel. I combined flour, light brown sugar, salt, butter and pecans in a bowl…

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And mixed it together with my fingers to form small clumps with the mixture and then set it aside.

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Next up I whisked together flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl and set this aside as well.

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In a separate bowl I began making the batter for the cake by beating together butter and sugar.

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I then added in two eggs one at a time.

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And then sour cream and vanilla extract.

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Once all of the wet ingredients were combined well I added in the dry ingredients.

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Once the wet and dry ingredients were mixed together it was time to pour it into my prepared pan.

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I started by spreading two-thirds of the batter into the pan.

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I then folded in chopped frozen peaches into the remaining batter. I had to go to about 4 different places to find frozen peaches. Each supermarket I went to had strawberries, blueberries and other frozen berries but no peaches. I ended up finding them at my local Target. It’s always the last place you check that has what you want.

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I then spread this batter on top of the non-peach batter already in the pan.

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And finally I spread the streusel topping on top.

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I baked the cake in a preheated 325F oven for 90 minutes, covering the cake with foil for the last 15 minutes so the streusel topping wouldn’t brown too much. It looked amazing when I took it out of the oven.

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I let it cool for a bit before placing it inside of a tin.

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And although it was meant for someone else, I did end up trying a piece and overall it was quite good, but, I think next time I’ll use fresh peaches instead.

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Peach Streusel Cake

Ingredients

Streusel

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1/4 cup packed light brown sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened

1 cup chopped toasted pecans

Batter

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 stick unsalted butter, softened

1 cup sugar

2 large eggs

1 cup sour cream

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

One 10-ounce bag frozen peaches, coarsely chopped

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 325F and butter flour a 9-inch springform pan.

2. Make the Streusel: In a bowl using your fingers, combine the flour, brown sugar, and salt. Add the butter and mix until smooth. Add the pecans; press the mixture into clumps.

3. Make the Batter: In a bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a large bowl, beat the butter and sugar at medium-high speed until light, 3 minutes. Beat in the eggs one at a time; beat in the sour cream and vanilla. Add the dry ingredients and beat at a low speed until incorporated.

4. Spread two-thirds of the batter in the pan. Fold the peaches into the remaining batter and spoon into the pan. Scatter the streusel crumbs on top. Bake the cake for 1 hour and 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean; loosely cover the cake foil for the last 15 minutes of baking. Transfer to a rack and cool for 30 minutes them remove the ring and let the cake cool completely before serving.