We invited my sisters neighbor, Edith to dinner the second night I was there. We had picked lots of veggies from Judy and Edith’s large shared garden that morning and planned to roast them and serve them with fresh sliced tomatoes, also from the garden, and a rack of lamb we would BBQ. For dessert, Chocolate Zucchini Cake.
As the sun began to drop behind the Sierra Nevada mountains to the west and the air began to finally cool the warm afternoon temperatures, we enjoyed our garden fresh feast, outside on the patio. Before Edith left she reminded Judy that her peach tree was loaded with fruit in need of picking and that we should come over in the morning to pick some before I headed home.
So early the next morning we walked over to Ediths’ and picked peaches. Edith was right the peaches were plentiful and ready for pickn. The turkey pan was just the right size for my share of peaches allowing them to ride home in the back of my car without becoming bruised.
Fresh Peach Cake - from Food Network Magazine, June 20111/4lb (1 stick) unsalted butter at room temperature 1 1/2 cups sugar 2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature 1 cup sour cream ( I used Greek yogurt) at room temperature 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 1 cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking soda 1 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 3 large ripe peaches, peeled, pitted and sliced (You could use nectarines, pulots, plumbs, or even berries. I think the peaches measured out to not quite 3 cups.) 1/2 cup chopped pecans 1. Preheat the oven to 350°. Grease a 9-inch square baking pan.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and 1 cup of the sugar for 3 to 5 minutes on medium-high speed, until light and fluffy. With the mixer on low, add the eggs, one at a time, then the sour cream and vanilla, and mix until the batter is smooth. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. With the mixer on low, slowly add the dry ingredients to the batter and mix just until combined. In a small bowl, combine the remaining 1/2 cup sugar and cinnamon.
3. Spread half of the batter evenly in the pan. Top with half the peaches, then sprinkle with two-thirds of the sugar mixture. Spread the remaining batter on top, arrange the remaining peaches on top and sprinkle with the remaining sugar mixture and the pecans.
4. Bake the cake for 45 – 55 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Another cake-like recipe I especially like that uses fresh fruit is one I highlighted in June 2010 for Pudding Cake. You can find that recipe here. I don’t know why it wouldn’t work with peaches. Both of these cakes are good with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream if you’re serving them for dessert. In fact, the Peach Cake would taste just like shortcake if you spooned some fresh sliced, sugared peaches around it and topped it with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Why didn’t I think of that sooner. Next time.