(The August 2005 Gourmet Cover Recipe)
Barrett’s obsession with food and cooking means that our apartment is completely littered with at least one (and, yes, sometimes more than one) copy of most major food magazines each month. August was a great month for the food magazines. (I dog-eared the corners of no fewer than 20 pages in Bon Appetit). My favorite recipe this month comes from the cover of Gourmet.
According to the piece, the recipe is by Ruth Cousineau. She calls this a Peach Blueberry Cake, but it seems more like a tart or a pie to me. Interestingly, the recipe calls for tapioca which is something my family has never used in pies or cobblers, but it works really well. The fruit holds its form surprisingly well. The best part is the crust which is cookie-like, though a little more crumbly. I’m thinking about adding a little amaretto to the crust next time to see if it broadens its flavor. The magazine also calls for a food processor to make the pastry, but since we don’t have one, my recipe is somewhat modified.
Overall, I found the recipe to be very easy and fast, and it really impressed my running partner Paul and his friend John when they were here for dinner a couple weeks ago. I’ve made it twice now, and it is quickly becoming my summer fruit dessert.
Peach Blueberry Cake
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) cold unsalted butter, cup into ˝ inch cubes
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup white sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon quick-cooking tapioca
2 pounds (approximately 4 large or 6 small) peaches, cut into ˝ inch pieces
1 cup blueberries
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
To make the Pastry:
-Combine the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt) using a wisk.
-Add the butter to these dry ingredients using a pastry cutter until it the butter is mealy.
-Transfer the mixture to mixer, and using the dough hook, add the egg and vanilla and mix until the dough begins to form a ball.
-Press the dough into the bottom and up the sides of a 9-inch springform pan. (You only need to go approximately 1/2 to 3/4 inch up the sides). The dough should be approximately 1/4 inch thick. Chill the pastry while you prepare the filling.
To make the Filling:
-Using a coffee grinder or food processor, grind a couple tablespoons of sugar with the flour and tapioca until the tapioca pearls become powdery.
-Transfer the powdery mixture to a large bowl and combine with the remaining sugar.
-Add peaches, blueberries, and lemon juice, and gently stir to thoroughly coat fruit with the dry mixture.
-Transfer fruit mixture into the pastry and bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit on middle rack for 1 3/4 hours until the middle is bubbling and the crust is golden. Be sure to loosely cover pan with sheet of foil during baking because (trust me) the pastry will burn otherwise.
-Cool the cake in pan, uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes. Then you can carefully remove the sides of the pan and transfer the cake to a serving dish.
-It will continue to steam for another hour, so don’t cover it yet unless you want a soggy crust.
-If you want to serve it warm, continue to cool the cake for another 30 to 45 minutes so that the filling doesn’t run when you cut into it.
-It also tastes great served at room temperature.