Spike It: Bourbon-Glazed Peaches with Mascarpone Cream
It’s peach season!
My hands are way up, if you’re not aware. This is the best part of summer (minus the rosé, maybe?), and I wait all year to have a REALLY GOOD peach. Sometimes I’m lucky and get a handful of fabulous ones. But most of them are so-so. Only once a summer do I get one so excellent that I actually remember it and crave it for another 365 days.
My solution to not-so-great-tasting peaches is to do “something else” with them. The perfect peach? I just want to eat it fresh. I want to bite into it and have no clashing flavor or texture — pure peach all the way. But if you have peaches that are out of season or just not ripe enough yet, or if you get some that seemingly never ripen as they should and lack a bit of flavor, I suggest roasting, grilling or pan-roasting them. It adds so much extra flavor. A little salt, a little sugar, in this case a little bourbon — the ideas are endless!
For these peaches, I simply cut them in half and removed the pit. I cooked them in butter, then deglazed the pan with a shot (or three) of bourbon, flipping the peaches as I went so they picked up all the delicious flavor. I might do this exact thing with ALL my peaches from now on. Bourbon peaches for breakfast? I mean, I don’t see a problem with that.
Perhaps my favorite part of this whole caramel-y plate is the mascarpone cream! I freak out over a good mascarpone cheese, and here I whisked it with a bit of honey and vanilla, plus a drop of cream, to make it melty and delicious.
Finally, a sprinkling of fresh mint leaves and this tastes like quintessential summer. It’s my favorite thing when I don’t feel like eating an ice cream cone or turning on the oven to make a cobbler or fruit crisp. And, I know, who wouldn’t feel like eating ice cream?! Well, in case you don’t, there’s this.
Bourbon-Glazed Peaches with Mascarpone Cream
Yield: 4 servings
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon olive oil
4 peaches, halved
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup bourbon
2/3 cup mascarpone cheese
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 tablespoon honey, plus more for drizzling
1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
Fresh mint for garnish
Heat a large skillet over medium heat and add the olive oil and butter. Sprinkle the peaches with the salt and place them cut-side down in the skillet. Cook until the peaches begin to get golden, about 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the peaches and cook on the other side for 2 to 3 minutes. Sprinkle the cut sides with the brown sugar. Flip again and cook for another 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, pour the bourbon in to deglaze the pan, then toss and flip the peaches a few times.
Whisk together the mascarpone cheese, cream, honey and vanilla extract until smooth.
Put the peaches on a plate and cover with a few dollops of the mascarpone cream. Add another drizzle of honey if you’d like more sweetness. Cover with fresh mint and serve.