Abracadabra — Nectarines!

My hubby makes fun of me because I often whine, “I hate technology!”

You know the feeling — when your server goes down or your email has the hiccups or some dastardly virus has infiltrated your otherwise peaceful online existence.

At times like that, can you blame me for uttering those blasphemous words? I think not.

But a couple of weeks ago, you might have heard me proclaim instead, “I adore technology!”

You see, it all started when I tweeted that I had bought some fabulously soft, juicy, drippy-licious Suncrest peaches at the Frog Hollow Farm store at the Ferry Building in San Francisco.

Then, what happens, but two days later, I find a huge box on my porch of just-picked nectarines, courtesy of Frog Hollow Farm.

Big Brother at work?

Big nectarines is more like it. Sweet, with just the right amount of tang, too.

Most of them, I just enjoyed out of hand. But I saved a few choice ones for extra special treatment: “Nectarine-Frangipane Galette.”

The recipe is from “Ready for Dessert” (Ten Speed Press), the new book by pastry chef and blogger extraordinaire, David Lebovitz.

The open-face, rustic tart starts with a simple dough that comes together in a pinch in a food processor, stand mixer or in a big bowl as you wield a pastry blender. The circle of dough is smeared with the frangipane, a thick, intensely almond tasting pastry cream made from sugar, flour, almond paste, almond extract, butter, an egg, and a little bit of rum, if you like. Finally, slices of fresh nectarines are fanned out over the top. Then, the edges of the dough are folded over to hold everything in.

The galette emerges from the oven flaky, buttery and crowned with soft, tender fruit enhanced by the rich frangipane.

The recipe directions call for making one large galette. I actually made two smaller ones instead, so that I could give one to a friend. If you make two, you’ll only need to bake them in the oven for about 35 minutes.

I still have my moments where I’m not thoroughly fond of technology. But I promise now not to bad-mouth it quite so much. I can’t anyway — not with my mouth full of nectarines.

Nectarine-Frangipane Galette

(Makes 8 servings)

3 large nectarines (1 3/4 pounds)

Galette dough (recipe below)

Frangipane (recipe below)

2 tablespoons unsalted or salted butter, melted

4 tablespoons granulated or coarse-crystal sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.

Pit and cut nectarines in 1/2-inch slices.

Lightly flour a work surface and roll out dough into a circle about 14 inches in diameter. Transfer it to the prepared baking sheet.

Smear frangipane over the dough, leaving a 2-inch border. Arrange nectarine slices in concentric circles over frangipane, or simply scatter them in an even layer. Fold border of the dough over the nectarines and brush the crust with some of the melted butter, then lightly brush or dribble rest of butter over nectarines. Sprinkle half of the sugar over the crust and the remaining half over nectarines.

Bake galette until nectarines are tender and crust has browned, about 1 hour. Slide galette off the parchment paper and onto a wire rack.

Serve warm or at room temperature.

Note: The dough can be made up to 3 days in advance and refrigerated. The tart should be serve the day it’s baked.

Galette Dough

(Makes enough for one 12-inch galette)

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch cubes and chilled

6 tablespoons ice water

In a large bowl using a pastry blender, in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a food processor fitted with the metal blade, mix together flour, sugar and salt. Add chilled butter cubes and mix until butter is broken into pieces about the size of large corn kernels. Don’t worry if a few pieces are in larger, rough chunks; they will make the dough nice and flaky.

Add ice water all at once and continue mixing just until the dough begins to hold together.

Shape dough into a 5-inch disk, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate until chilled and firm, at least 30 minutes. Use as directed in the recipe.

Note: Disk of dough can be refrigerated for up to 2 days or frozen for up to 1 month.

Frangipane

(Makes about 1 cup)

4 ounces almond paste, crumbled

1 1/2 teaspoons sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons all-purpose flour

1/8 teaspoon almond extract

6 tablespoons unsalted or salted butter, at room temperature

1 large egg, at room temperature

1 teaspoon rum (optional)

In a food processor fitted with the metal blade or in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix together almond paste, sugar, flour, and almond extract until almond paste is in fine pieces. Add butter and mix until completely incorporated, then add egg and rum, if using, and continue mixing until frangipane is as smooth as possible. Don’t worry if there are a few tiny bits of almond paste; they’ll disappear with baking.

Note: Frangipane will keep in the refrigerator for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 1 month. For easier spreading, bring it to room temperature before using.

– All recipes from “Ready for Dessert” by David Lebovitz


More: David Lebovitz’s Cocoa-Marzipan Pound Cake

More: Stone Fruit Tea Cake

More: Peach Blueberry Cake

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