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Friday, August 27, 2010

roasted peaches with hazelnuts and tarragon

looking for a light, sweet ending to your summer meals? try this roasted peach from chef jerry traunfeld's the herbal kitchen. the roasted peach with the crunchy topping is reminiscent of a peach pie, but you're spared the unbutton-the-jeans feeling that often follows dessert. still, if the devil on your shoulder prevails, serve it with vanilla ice cream or fresh whipped cream to make it a full dessert course. 

the tarragon is perfect in this dish, though jerry suggests using anise hyssop or green fennel seeds in its place. you can make it without the herbs, but considering what an herbal genius chef traunfeld is, you may as well give it a try!

be sure to use freestone peaches for this recipe. these are the varieties that don't cling to the pit, unlike clingstone varieties that hold on for dear life. if you try this with a clingstone, you'll end up with handfuls of  peach puree. your local peach growers/vendors should be able to tell you which is which. 

roasted peaches with hazelnuts and tarragon
from jerry traunfeld's roasted peaches filled with almond and tarragon, the herbal kitchen

*note: i tried to halve the recipe, but since it called for one egg in the batter, my batter was a little thin. i'll give you the proportions the recipe calls for rather than what i did!

6 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1/4 cup plus 2 Tbps all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp coarsely chopped tarragon
3/4 cup chopped hazelnuts (i used hazels because i had them on hand, but the original recipe calls for sliced almonds)
4 large freestone peaches

preheat oven to 400 degrees. beat butter, sugar, and brown sugar in bowl with a mixer until smooth. beat in the egg and then the flour. add nuts and tarragon and stir to combine.

split the peaches and remove the pits. (my method is to run a knife all the way around, to the pit, then hold each half and give a little twist. they should just pop right off the pit.) add peaches cut-side up to a shallow baking dish just large enough to hold them so they don't fall over during cooking. fill each peach with filling mixture. (i dug out the peach cavities first, just a bit, in order to have more room for the filling.) bake 30-40 minutes or until filling is browned and crisp. serve warm. 

peaches: lyall's farm
hazelnuts: holmquist hazelnut orchards
tarragon: our garden


  1. I just love the idea of combining fruits with herbs, something we typically think of as savory.

  2. so do i, hazel. playing around with summer herbs in general has been a ball!