Last month I had the opportunity to pull together all of the desserts for my very dear friend's wedding. It was held in the mountains east of San Diego, a far difference landscape from here in Massachusetts. She and I met in college and studied ceramics together. She is also a huge inspiration to my growing interest in gardening and cooking, though she claims she doesn't like to cook. It's to her that I salvage the good part of a good veggie or fruit going bad. I aslo have to thank her for holding my hand in canning journeys.
She did not want the typical layered cake, but rather an array of items to choose from. My goal was to stick with seasonal and use ingredients from her garden. Her and her husband started Wilde Oaks Gardens in Jamul, CA where they offered there first rounds of a C.S.A. share.
The rest of the food offered at the wedding reception was also picked from their garden and other local sources.
There was also roasted chicken from her flock and a pit fired pig that was raised by their neighbors.
|A woman manning the pit fire, for approx 12 hrs in 90 degree weather!|
The whole weekend was chaos but came together perfectly. I was a true test of effort from friends and family and we pulled it off, even when sleep was absent.
Here is a sample of what I made and a start to the recipes. Check back soon for more...there was a lot!
For the dessert Menu:
Native and Colorado Peach Tarts with a Pistachio Frangipane
Chocolate Zucchini Cake with Coco Nibs and a Coconut Lime Frosting(vegan and gluten free)
Lemon Bars with Rosemary (gluten free)
Mexican Wedding Cakes
Fresh Fig Tart with Fresh Locally Made Goat Cheese and Honey
Chocolate Walnut Torte (dairy free)
Mini Beet Cakes with an Orange Cream Cheese Frosting
Fig and Walnut Biscotti
Sesame Orange and Almond Biscotti
Olive Oil Zucchini Cake with a Lemon Crunch Glaze
Today I want to share with you the Peach tart recipe:
Native Peach Tart with Pistachio Frangipane (serves 8)
Pate Sucree (makes 2 crust)
2 large egg yolks
1/4 cup ice water
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons sugar
1/8 tsp Salt
2 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
Lightly beat yolks and water in a small bowl until combined.
Pulse flour, sugar, and a pinch of salt in a food processor until combined. Add butter, and process until mixture resembles coarse meal, about 20 seconds. With the machine running, add yolk mixture in a slow, steady stream. Process until mixture just begins to hold together (no longer than 30 seconds).
Shape dough into 2 disks, and wrap each in plastic. Refrigerate until firm, 30 minutes to overnight.
Pistachio Frangipane (enough for two tarts)
1/2 cup raw pistachios finely ground
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 egg yolk
1/4 cup sugar
pinch of salt
A coffee grinder dedicated to grinding seeds/nuts/spices is a good idea. Make sure to not grind for too long because the machine will produce heat and turn your nuts into butter.
Mix all of the ingredients together to form a paste. This will keep for up to one week in the refrigerator.
1 par-baked tart crust
1/2 of the pistachio frangipane paste
3 medium peaches pitted and sliced to about 12 pieces from each peach
1/2 cup apricot jam for glaze
2 tablespoons lightly chopped pistachios for garnish
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Roll out one of the pie crust to about 12 inches in diameter, using as little flour as possible. To move into tart pan, fold in half, then fold in half again for easy transition. Layout tart crust out and press gently into the corners of the pan. Press the sides into the grooves then run a knife around the top of the edge to make a clean cut. Bake the tart shell for about 10-15 minutes, until it starts to turn golden brown. Watch it and when it starts to bubble, prick them with a fork to let the air out. You can also do the bean, wax paper, and foil method, but I found the first way to be quite easy and less of a fuss. Remove from oven and let cool.
Spread the frangipane over the tart to be about 1/4 inch thick. Lay the peach slices out in a circle, sightly overlapping, starting on the outside, until you fill the shell. There should be two circles.
Bake the tart for about 20-30 minutes, until the frangipane sets and the tart is bubbling a little. Remove from oven. To make the apricot glaze, heat about 1/2 cup of the jam and thin it out with a tablespoon of water or Grand Marnier. Once cooled a little, run it through a sieve to remove any lumps. Brush on the fruit and shell to coat. This helps keep the fruit from drying out and giving a shinier look.
|note this tart is missing the glaze!|
Garnish the tart with mint if you have it and crushed pistachios.