Peach Hand Pie with Salted Caramel Bourbon

Kawan Puff Pastry is one of my pantry's many secret weapons. I use it to make hors d'oeuvres, baklava, and a variety of hand pies. Whenever I serve it, people assume I slaved in the kitchen for 15 hours, when in fact it took me 15 minutes.

“And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.”
― F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby

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I put down my book, took off my sunglasses, took a sip of ice-cold lemonade, and plunged in the pool.

My favourite season has officially arrived.

I love everything about summer. I love going to the beach with my family and taking a dip in one of the most beautiful beaches this side of the globe. I love feeling the cool ocean breeze in my hair as I surf. I love diving into pristine waters and discovering the diverse marine life that resides in the deep blue sea. I love building sand castles and memories with the little ones. I love the taste of saltwater on my lips as Mr. Flintstone and I sling back a margarita or two.

I love grilling food in the summer—from chicken satay to babyback ribs. I love grilling fish, grilling vegetables—I even tried grilling tofu much to the chagrin of the house help who ended up cleaning the grill!

What I don’t like though, is getting bloated during bikini season.

One thing I’ve learned from Ashtanga yoga class is it is possible to eat lean and clean without sacrificing flavour. And so for our family’s annual barbecue cookout—I decided to trade fatty slabs of ribeye for spiced up chunks of beef sirloin. In short, this year, it’s less like Bobby Flay, and more like Yotam Ottolenghi.

For starters, we have watermelon and arugula salad, studded with feta cheese and toasted pine nuts, and drizzled with red wine vinaigrette. Sweet, nutty, salty, and tart—this salad not only tastes good, it is actually good for you. Our main dish is grilled beef kebabs marinated in olive oil, lemon juice, cumin, red pepper, coriander seed, and zatar, served with a cool yogurt tahini dip. The grilled beef kebabs are accompanied by grilled vegetable kebabs, grilled corn, and aromatic lemon saffron rice with toasted almond. Light, nutritious, and filling—these dishes are as flavourful as they are guilt-free.

Do wash all of this down with a glass of dayap margarita with homemade mango sorbet. I’m not a nutritionist, but with all the vitamin C in there, it may be good for you after all. Don’t take me seriously, I’m kidding!

Or am I?

As for the dessert, well, to be quite honest, it’s not exactly the most healthy choice. It’s composed of buttery puff pastry, succulent peaches, brown sugar vanilla cream with cinnamon and nutmeg, and lastly—salted caramel sauce made more potent by a generous shot of bourbon.

I understand. You worked your glutes off at plana forma classes to look like you haven’t given birth at all. You still have 2 upcoming beach trips. In fact, your swim suit costs more than the plane ride to one of those beach trips! You have the option to skip dessert.

But why would you? :)

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Peach Hand Pie with Salted Caramel Bourbon

Ingredients:

Prepared ingredients:

1 cup thinly sliced peaches
1 pack prepared puff pastry, defrosted 10-15 minutes before baking
4 tbsp Norco butter, melted

Custard:

1 cup crème fraiche or sour cream
1 egg
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ tsp McCormick ground nutmeg
¼ tsp McCormick ground cinnamon
1 tsp McCormick Vanilla extract
Pinch of salt

Salted caramel bourbon sauce:

½ cup Stonewall honey maple caramel
1 tbsp rock salt
¼ cup Jim Beam bourbon

Procedure:

BEFORE BAKING: Assemble and measure your ingredients. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper; set aside. Position a rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350°F.

1.    Simmer caramel sauce, salt, and bourbon over low heat for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Turn off heat. Set aside.
2.    Make the custard. Whisk crème fraiche or sour cream with egg, brown sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon, vanilla, and salt.
3.    Put a dollop of custard and 2 peach slices on each puff pastry square. Gently fold puff pastry to enclose filling to create a triangular pastry.
4.    Brush puff pastry triangles with butter and bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Remove from oven. Drizzle  salted caramel bourbon sauce over cooked puff pastry.
5.    Serve!


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