I’ve always had a thing for peaches. I think it’s because my mom said when she was pregnant with me, she craved them. This love must have been passed along in utero because I too, delight in the season of stone fruit.
Every summer at the beach, we would excavate the old-fashioned, wooden sided hand crank ice cream maker and churn out quarts of fragrant peach ice cream, our favorite flavor. We took turns cranking the handle till our arms ached, all the while anticipating the best part – licking the paddle. It was a summer ritual.
Besides ice cream, peaches consumed our summertime baking activities: peach jam, peach pie, and my personal favorite, peach kuchen. I don’t know where the recipe for peach kuchen came from but I’ve been making it for over 45 years and still love it as much as I did as a teenager. Maybe it brings back fond memories of those care-free summers, swimming for hours in the warm ocean by day and baking with peaches by night.
Sweet and juicy ripe peaches from the farmer’s market, the best kind, are the foundation for my Peach Kuchen. The recipe comes together easily as there is no dough to roll out, just a crumble that you pat into the bottom and sides of a pan. Slice peaches on top and sprinkle with sugar. A top sour cream layer adds depth of flavor when paired with the juicy peaches and buttery crust. It is irresistible and great for breakfast too!
Note: Although this recipe is called a “Kuchen,” it is not the typical German yeast dough Kuchen. It must be a modification perhaps by my grandmother.
2 Cups flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons sugar
4 oz. butter or 1 stick, cold and cut into 1/2” cubes
5-6 ripe peaches – I leave the skin on
3/4 Cup sugar, more or less depending on the peaches and your sweet tooth
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 egg yolks
1 Cup sour cream
hearty sprinkling of grated nutmeg
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Mix all dry ingredients into a bowl. Cut butter in with a pastry blender or fork until crumbly. Pat into the bottom of a 7 X 11” pan.
Slice peaches and arrange over crust.
Combine sugar and cinnamon. Sprinkle evenly over peaches.
Bake 15 minutes. Remove from oven and turn oven down to 325.
Meantime, combine the yolks and sour cream. Stir in the nutmeg or you can sprinkle it on top of the custard mixture.
Pour the sour cream custard mixture evenly over the peaches.
Bake another 30 minutes or until crust is brown and custard is set.
Serve warm or cold.
Makes about 8 servings.