Thursday, August 9, 2012

Rustic Peach Tarts

So my last blog post was about MIAMI Magazine's event To Live and Dine. I'm not ashamed to say that I sampled something from every table at the event, but by far the best thing I ate was a peach tart with basil mousse and raspberry gelee. It sounds fancy, and despite my initial intimidation, I had to re-create it. It's the perfect dessert for this time of year because it's light, refreshing, and super delicious. I know that basil and whipped cream are two things you'd never think to put together, but somehow combined with the fresh fruit and crunchy, buttery shortbread, it creates pure culinary magic. 

Peach Tart Recipe:
I began by making the shortbread, but instead of making them into cookies, I pressed them into a muffin pan and used a fork to poke the bottom. This is so it doesn't rise, and stays in the cute little bowl shape. Once the shortbread cups are done, set them aside to cool.

Next, I got four peaches and poached them in 2c water, 1c sugar, a handful of basil leaves, the zest and juice of one lemon, and 2tbsp vanilla extract (even better if you have a vanilla bean, but my college budget does not warrant fancypants cooking).

 Poach the peaches for 5-7 minutes. Drain from the liquid (but set the liquid aside, you'll need it later), let them cool and remove the peach skin. Cut them in half, remove the pit, and chop them into bite-sized pieces. Toss together with 1c Greek yogurt, 3 tbsp of the poaching liquid, and 1/4c sugar. Sometimes Greek yogurt can be bitter, so add more sugar if needed. Set the mixture aside.

The basil whipped cream is the easiest part (and possibly the most delicious). Pour 1c heavy whipping cream, 2tbsp sugar, 1tsp vanilla extract, and about 5 finely chopped basil leaves into a large mixing bowl. Whip with an electric mixer until stiff peaks form. Set aside. 

So, now you have all of your necessary ingredients. Once everything is cool enough, it's time to assemble these babies. Start with the shortbread cups, add enough of the chopped peach/yogurt mixture to fill it, and pipe the basil whipped cream on top. Garnish with a basil leaf and a raspberry. Refrigerate until serving.

Oh, and I didn't try to make the gelee, so I just melted some jelly and spooned it on top. 

I'm fancy, huh?

 Despite my erratic directions, I hope you enjoy this dessert as much as I did. 
xx, Jaime

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