Thursday, September 16, 2010

Summer goodness

Today is a nice day. The windows are all open, it's only supposed to get into the high 80's today, and Ethan let me sleep in a tad (although he did think it was time to get up at 5:30 this morning, thankfully he fell asleep with Jon and I). Oh, and did I mention I didn't wake up nauseous this morning? What an amazing feeling!!!! I probably haven't felt this in awhile.

Now, as I write this I am eagerly anticipating the arrival of Fall. Starbucks has made is much easier by bringing back my all time favorite drink, the Pumpkin Spice Latte, back a bit early (however, there is something VERY wrong about drinking one during 100 degree weather!). And, even last night, I noticed one of the trees behind us changing colors. . . yes, there were some yellow leaves on it!!!!

But, as much as I am anxious for fall to get here, I am sad to say good bye to the fruits of summer. . . peaches, nectarines, plums, pluots, strawberries, blueberries. . . you name it! I must confess that living in the central valley leaves me quite spoiled when it comes to the surplus of these amazing fruits. In fact, my husband and I spent lots of time at our local farmers market stocking up on stone fruits and we still didn't make it through the week without running out of fruit.

So, in honor of fall's arrival (even though it still feels like summer here), I am going to share a recipe I found about a month ago, that was so easy and so delicious!

Individual Peach Upside Down Cakes
These were so incredibly easy to make and so delicious. This recipe is from Alton Brown (as in the Food Network guy who tells you how things work with food). I thought it was funny that he said it was an intermediate skill level, because it was so easy and so quick! Plus it only makes 4 ramekins and won't last long in your house.
It also has a touch of crystallized ginger that adds just a touch of deliciousness to the peaches. My husband said he felt like he was eating at a fancy restaurant and I didn't feel like I had slaved in the kitchen working hard for the most gourmet dessert I could find.
This is what it looks like with the peaches and crystallized ginger in a bowl.
Baked to perfection!!!! So yummy to taste!

Here's the recipe:

  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 medium peaches, peeled
  • 1-ounce finely chopped crystallized ginger, approximately 3 tablespoons
  • 2.5 ounces all-purpose flour, approximately 1/2 cup
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk, room temperature
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Whipped cream or ice cream, for serving, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Divide 2 tablespoons of the butter between 4 (6-ounce) ramekins. Melt the remaining tablespoon of butter and set aside. Evenly divide the brown sugar between the ramekins; sprinkling it into the bottoms of the dishes. Cut each peach into 12 to 14 pieces. Lay the peaches on top of the sugar; evenly dividing them between the dishes and sprinkle with the ginger. Set aside.

In a medium mixing bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. In a separate bowl whisk together the sugar, buttermilk, vanilla extract and 1 tablespoon of melted butter. Add the wet mixture to the dry mixture and stir just until combine. Pour the batter over the peaches; dividing the mixture evenly between the dishes. Place on the middle rack of the oven and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until the cake reaches an internal temperature of 190 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer.

Remove from the oven to a rack and allow to cool for 5 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of each dish and turn upside down onto a serving plate. Repeat with each cake. Serve immediately with whipped cream or ice cream if desired.

Enjoy and Happy Baking!

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