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Bring a bit of sunshine in your kitchen this winter with the bright and sunny Peach & Almond slice. Adapted from Happy Home Baking, the underlying base is a spongy layer of almond infused cake. While you may use other nuts like hazelnut or pecan nuts, I think almonds are the perfect pair when it comes to fruit desserts like this one. I used canned peaches here, fresh ones are nowhere to be found at this time of the year but substitutions such as apricots, mangoes and plums are very much allowed. Serve with freshly whipped cream, if you can.

PEACH & ALMOND SLICE

Ingredients:

100g unsalted butter, room temperature

30g + 60g caster sugar, divided

2 large eggs, separated

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

80g all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

70g ground almonds

6 peach halves, fresh or canned

50g almond flakes

Method:

  • If using canned apricots, wash them to remove the syrup, drain, pat dry with paper towel and set aside.
  • Place butter in a mixing bowl, beat with a wooden spoon or a balloon whisk till smooth. Add the sugar.

  • Continue to beat until mixture is light and fluffy. Gradually add egg yolks, whisking after each addition.
  • Add vanilla extract, whisk to combine. In a clean mixing bowl, beat the egg whites with an electric mixer.

  • Add half of the sugar and turn to high speed and beat the mixture. Continue to add in remaining sugar.
  • Beat until the egg whites reaches the soft peak stage. The egg whites should appear smooth and glossy.

  • Add the beaten egg whites into the butter and egg yolk batter in 2 separate additions, folding gently.
  • Sieve over the flour, baking powder and ground almonds. Fold with the spatula until just combined.

  • Spoon batter into a 18cm square pan lined with parchment paper. Spread and smooth it out evenly.
  • Arrange the peaches, cut side down. Sprinkle the almond flakes on the surface of the exposed batter.

  • Bake in preheated oven at 180 degrees C for about 30-35 mins or till the almond flakes start to brown.
  • Remove from oven and leave to cool in pan for 5 mins. Serve warm or cold. Makes 6 individual slices.

Smells of Almonds & Peaches

The Monthly Mingle is a blog event created by Meeta of What’s for Lunch, Honey? which runs from the 1st through to the 30/31st of the respective month. The theme and deadline to the Monthly Mingle are announced on the last weekend of the prior month.  This deadline is only the specific date the actual theme ends on and not the date you must post your entry on your blog. Your creation must exclusively be prepared for the current Monthly Mingle theme and cannot be submitted to any other blog event.

This is my first at participating in the Monthly Mingle since, after I read Meeta’s post about a Taste of Yellow for Barbara, I felt I had to be part of this tribute to such a special woman – Barbara Harris of Winos and Foodies. In 2004 Barbara was diagnosed with cancer, a diagnosis which instantly changed her life forever and altered her long-term horizons. On 29 June, she lost her long battle with cancer and the food blogging sky lost one of its most inspirational stars.

Barbara started her blog in January 2005 and was soon known by all who ran across her online as kind, funny, talented, gentle, brave and inspirational.  She was open about the hardships and indignities imposed by her disease, but at the same time she remained reolutely optimistic, always planning for and looking forward to foodie adventures when her latest treatment regime ended. One of Barbara’s most lasting online legacies was the creation of the LiveStrong with a Taste of Yellow event in 2007.

This yellow-themed event co-incided each year with LiveStrong Day, created bycancer survivor Lance Armstrong’s LiveStrong Foundation to raise awareness of cancer. Each year, bloggers from around the globe shared yellow recipes and stories of loved ones who were fighting cancer or who had lost the battle.

“I’m asking all bloggers to participate in the blog event A Taste of  Yellow by making a dish containing some type of yellow food. This  can be anything you like as long it features a yellow food. Some ideas to get you started are lemon, banana, saffron, corn, eggs, cheese.” Barbara Harris, April 2007

As a tribute to Barbara’s memory, this month’s Monthly Mingle event will be dedicated to Barbara’s memory, and that the theme will be “A Taste of Yellow”. I did not have to look far and wide to settle on my dessert dish; the Apricot Saffron Cake from Meeta’s blog seemed to me the perfect offering. Instead of apricots and almonds, I switched to peaches and pistachios but I hope that the result is suitably yellow to submit to this particular blog event.

PEACH & PISTACHIO CAKE – FOR BARBARA

Ingredients:

150 g unsalted butter

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg, room temperature

150 g ground almonds

1 1/3 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp baking powder

1/4 cup milk

420 g tinned peach halves

1/4 cup pistachios, chopped

Icing sugar, for dusting

Method:

  • Butter a 20cm x 20cm square baking pan and line the base with baking paper. Preheat oven at 180 degrees C.

  • Beat the butter and sugar until light and creamy. Add egg and beat again until evenly incorporated.

  • Add ground almonds, then sift in flour and baking powder. Fold through alternately with the milk.

  • Whisk through quickly at the end to ensure the batter is smooth. Spread the mixture over the base of the pan.

  • Press the peach halves randomly into the mixture. Sprinkle chopped pistachios over the top.

  •  Bake at 180 degrees C for 35-40 minutes. Allow to cool and dust generously with icing sugar.

A Taste of Yellow – In Memory of Barbara Harris

I’ve been blogging for the past 365 days now. Looking back at my debut posts, I feel like I have come quite a long way with some 75 posts and hundreds of food photos. I wish to thank the food blogging community for inspiring me with their lovely creations and witty writing.

I would also like to thank my readers for their love, support and feedback. And to celebrate, I’m hosting my first giveaway. The winner, chosen at random, will receive a gift hamper filled with goodies… 

  1. Lindt Chocolate Bars
  2. Vahiné Sugar Sprinkles
  3. Assorted Cookie Cutters
  4. Bourbon Premium Vanilla Beans
  5. Spring-release Ice Cream Scoop
  6. Vahiné Cerneaux de Noix de Pécan
  7. Illovo’s Golden Syrup
  8. Kanasuk’s Light Muscovado Sugar
  9. Assortment of Cupcake Liners
  10. Des Desserts au Chocolat Cookbook

To Enter:

1. Leave a comment at the end of this post.

2. Blog about this giveaway on your own blog space.

3. Post it on your Facebook wall, Twitter, Hi5 or any of your social networks.

4. Become a Fan of InspiredtoBake on Facebook Pages.

5. Each of the above entitles you to an entry to the giveaway. Multiple entries are obviously gonna increase your chances of winning 🙂

Terms and Conditions:

1. This giveaway is open to Mauritian residents only.

2. You must provide your name, postal address, email address and contact number so that I know where to send the gift hamper. 

3. You have until Monday, 28th Feb 11:59 pm EST to submit your entries.

CHARLOTTE AUX PECHES

  

Ingredients:

100g all purpose flour

2 tbs corn flour

100g caster sugar

4 egg yolks

2 egg whites

1 tin canned peaches

1 cup ice cream

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 180°C. Line baking tray with paper.
  • Beat the yolks with sugar until light and fluffy and sugar has dissolved. Beat the egg whites until soft peaks form.

 

  • Sift flour over egg yolk mixture and very gently fold to amalgamate. You need to keep the mixture as light as possible and incorporate as much air as possible.

 

  • Add egg whites in 2 batches. Fold until just combined.
  • Put mixture into piping bag fitted with plain tip.
  • Pipe lines onto baking paper. Dust them with icing sugar.

 

  • Bake for about 8 minutes or until light golden in colour.
  • Let them cool on the tray before removing.
  • Store in an airtight container. Makes about 25 pieces.

 

  • To assemble the charlotte, line a 8″ baking pan with aluminium foil so that it hangs by about 1″ above the rim.
  • Drain canned peaches well and reserve 2 tbs syrup from can.

 

  • Dilute syrup with 1/4 cup water and use this for soaking the savoiardi. Dip biscuits for only about a second to prevent them from getting soggy.

 

  • Trim savoiardi biscuits at one end and use them to line the sides of the prepared pan. Arrange the trimmings so that they fit to cover the base.

 

  • Cut half of the peaches into large cubes or slices. Soften ice cream and spread a thin layer over biscuit base. Arrange another layer of savoiardi.
  • Top with fruit and spread remaining ice cream over. Leave to set until firm.

 

  • Slice the remaining peaches thinly with a sharp knife.
  • Arrange them in a beautiful pattern over the cream and return to the fridge for at least 12 hours or overnight.

 

  • For individual servings, layer savoiardi and cream in dessert cups and top with fresh mint. The recipe for savoiardi is from CooksAlmostAnything.

Good Luck!

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PrerrnaMirchi
Mauritius

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Daring Bakers

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