Let me introduce you to my new favorite dessert. Whenever I have a dinner party, this will likely be my top pick to close the meal. Ok, maybe not every single meal, but it’s really so good, and has far too many dinner-party-perfection qualities not to at least consider it.
Let’s discuss. First, it’s a complete make ahead dish. You can grill the peaches, sprinkle them with sugar and let them rest in a baking dish all afternoon. And they only need to bake for 10 minutes – the perfect amount of time to rest after the main course. Second, the flavors are lovely, and slightly unexpected. Amaretto is one of those “wow” flavors, in my opinion, because we’ve all heard of almonds, but the liqueur is something that isn’t usually stocked in every liquor cabinet.
Next, texture. The mascarpone is creamy, peaches are soft, and cookies crunchy. One little bite has everything. And finally, this little dessert has great stage presence. They look special on the plate, and will end your next meal on a perfect note.Peaches with Amaretti
Peaches with Amaretti
Recipe adapted from Ina Garten
8 ripe peaches, cut in 1/2 and pitted (or one peach per person if small)
1/4 cup good almond liqueur (recommended: Amaretto Di Savonna)
8 amaretti cookies, crumbled
Mascarpone or vanilla ice cream to serve, optional
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Heat a grill pan over medium heat and brush with olive oil to make sure the peaches don't stick. Place the peaches, cut side down, on the grill and cook for a few minutes, until they're slightly charred.
Place the peaches in an oven-proof dish, sprinkle each half with a little sugar. Drizzle a dash of amaretto liqeuer over each peach. (If preparing these in advance, this is the time to just let them sit on the counter until you’re ready to bake.)
Bake the peaches for about 10 minutes, until they're very tender. Serve hot, at room temperature, with with crumbled amaretti cookies on top or with the cookies on the side. I like to serve them with a dollop of mascarpone or vanilla ice cream.