Bruleé Peaches with Cornmeal Buttermilk Biscuits & Whipped Cream recipe from Cooking with Cocktail Rings

Brûlée Peaches with Cornmeal Buttermilk Biscuits & Whipped Cream

As we head into stone fruit season at the peak of summer I can’t help but incorporate peaches into just about everything. The typical season for peaches lasts from late June to September, though Southern food writer Kathleen Purvis, has stayed adamant that peaches should never be eaten before the Fourth of July. Unfortunately the truth is that the season can differ in various parts of the country so the best way to tell when fruit is at its peak is to keep an eye out at the local farmers market. That way you get the freshest local produce and you can usually sample the products you are getting ahead of time. 

This southern twist on strawberry shortcake uses juicy yellow peaches and cornmeal based biscuits, perfect for hot summer nights. Letting the peaches sit in the sugar for a bit before bruleéeing (torching) the sugar softens the fruit and brings out additional natural sweetness. The cornmeal adds a slight crunchiness and light corn flavor that compliments the stone fruit. 

If you don’t own a kitchen torch you can alternatively heat the oven broiler, add the peaches sprinkled with sugar to a baking sheet and broil until the sugar is caramelized and bubbling, about 6 to 8 minutes. 

 

Ingredients: 

For the cornmeal buttermilk biscuits: 

1½ cups all-purpose flour

½ cup yellow cornmeal

¼ cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon kosher salt

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into chunks

¾ cup low-fat buttermilk

1 egg, beaten

2 tablespoons demarara sugar

 

For the brûléed peaches: 

4 peaches, halved and pitted

¼ cup granulated sugar

 

For assembly:

2 cups heavy whipping cream

Basil leaves, for garnish

 

Instructions:

For the cornmeal buttermilk biscuits: 

Preheat oven to 400ºF.

In a large mixing bowl whisk together the flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking soda, baking powder and salt. Add the butter to the bowl and use a pastry cutter or a fork to cut the butter into the flour. Do this until the mixture resembles rough crumbs and the butter is still in pieces. Add the buttermilk and stir with a wooden spoon until loose, sticky dough forms.

Turn the dough out onto a clean, lightly floured surface. Use your hands to shape the dough into a rectangle. Fold the dough over and reshape again into a rectangle about 1½-inches thick. Cut the dough into biscuits by pressing straight down, using a 2-inch biscuit cutter. Reshape the dough as needed to continue cutting biscuits.

Place the biscuits on a greased cookie sheet and brush with the beaten egg. Sprinkle with the demerara sugar and bake until golden brown, about 12 to 15 minutes. Remove and let cool on a baking sheet.

 

For the brûléed peaches: 

Sprinkle the halved peaches with half the sugar and let sit for 15 to 20 minutes. Sprinkle with the remaining sugar and using a torch, slowly caramelize the sugar until its golden brown and bubbling, about 2 minutes.

 

For serving: 

Add the heavy cream to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and beat on medium speed for 1 minute. Keep the mixture running while you add the sugar then increase the speed of the mixer to medium-high, beating until the cream forms stiff peaks, about 2 minutes. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.

Split the biscuits and add to a bowl with the caramelized peaches. Top with whipped cream and basil.

 

Serves 4. 

 

 

 

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