If locally grown peaches aren’t a sweet enough treat, nectarines also can be picked and purchased at some area orchards.
Ashland’s Valley View and Central Point’s Beebe Farms, both mentioned in this week’s food section, grow nectarines. But nectarine varieties are fewer than peaches, and the window for snapping them up is smaller.
With both stone fruits in hand, this free-form tart comes together in a snap. There’s no shame, either, in the time-saving step of using store-bought pie crust or puff-pastry dough.
For pastry crust:
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt (preferably kosher or sea salt)
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 1/2 pounds fresh ripe peaches and nectarines (roughly half and half)
1/8 teaspoon salt (preferably kosher or sea salt)
3 to 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
In a bowl of a food processor, place the flour, salt and sugar; process until combined. Add the butter and process until mixture resembles coarse meal (for about 15 seconds). Pour about 2 tablespoons ice-cold water in a slow, steady stream through feed tube until pastry just holds together when pinched. Add more water, a little at a time, up to 2 additional tablespoons, if necessary.
Gather pastry into a ball, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about an hour.
Once pastry has chilled, remove from refrigerator and place on a lightly floured surface. Roll pastry into a 13-inch round. To prevent pastry from sticking to counter, and to ensure uniform thickness, keep lifting up and turning pastry a quarter turn as you roll (always roll from center of pastry outward to get uniform thickness). Transfer pastry to a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Cover and place in refrigerator while you prepare filling.
Preheat oven to 425 F.
Cut the peaches and nectarines in half, remove pits and cut fruit into 1-inch slices.
Place peach and nectarine slices in a large bowl and season with the salt. Then add the sugar and gently toss to combine.
Arrange fruit on pastry, placing them as close together as you can, without overlapping slices too much. Leave about 2 inches of pastry at edges.
Scrape any remaining sugar from bowl and drizzle over top of fruit. Gently fold edges of pastry up and over peaches and nectarines, pleating as necessary. Make sure to seal any cracks in pastry.
Bake in preheated oven for about 35 to 40 minutes or until pastry is golden-brown and peaches and nectarines are tender when gently pierced with a sharp knife. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Makes about 6 to 8 servings.
— Recipe adapted by Tribune News Service from thejoyofbaking.com