I’ve always been a really picky eater. I’ve made some progress on that front since I started this blog, but I’m still way too picky to be called a “foodie” or anything like that. But this summer I’ve made some pretty big discoveries that have challenged my preconceptions of certain foods and because of that I’ve decided to change. I made this challenge to myself: I will try everything at least once. If I don’t like it, fine, but at least now I know I don’t like it and I’m not just assuming based on how it looks or smells or whatever weird childhood memories it brings up.
For example, I’ve never liked carrots because in elementary school I threw up in the middle of the cafeteria after eating some. Now it turns out, I still don’t really like the taste of raw carrots. But I use carrots in my cooking all the time now because I’ve discovered that if they are in something else, like a soup or salad or pot pie, then I don’t mind them. I used to obsessively pick them out of everything, which was beyond annoying and I can’t believe I bothered. It’s so much easier not being picky!
But the thing that actually spurred this new approach to food was summer fruit. Specifically cherries and peaches. I’ve never liked either. But I realized that I’ve never actually had a fresh cherry before and the only peaches I’d ever eaten were the kind that come in a can of fruit cocktail. I’ve been seeing tons of cherry and peach recipes all summer long, so when I saw cherries and nice looking peaches at the grocery store, I grabbed them on a whim. When I got home and tasted the fruit, I was blown away by the flavor. But it made me feel SO STUPID. I’d been missing out on delicious cherries all my life because I just assumed they tasted like that awful candy or cough syrup. And I thought peaches were as slimy and flavorless as their canned equivalent. After that I knew I had to stop being such a picky eater. How much wonderful food have I missed out on because I wouldn’t even want to try it?
After I discovered I liked these fruits, I went on a search to find as many recipes as possible that use them, which is how I came to make this tart. It is so good, I think it kind of puts the strawberry tart I made last year to shame. When the peaches caramelize, their juices soak into the dulce de leche filling and it all tastes so good together. It’s a messy dessert, but it’s the kind where you want to lick your plate at the end to get every last bit of it.
If you don’t know what dulce de leche is, it’s a delicious form of caramel and it’s a perfect accompaniment to peaches. You may be able to find some at the grocery store, but it’s also quite easy to make. I made it few times and tried a few methods, but I recommend this method from David Lebovitz because it was really easy and took the least time. The only change I would suggest is to add a couple of cinnamon sticks to the sweetened condensed milk while it cooks because that adds more flavor to the dulce de leche. It especially works well with this tart since there is cinnamon in the crust. This recipe only uses about 1/4 cup of dulce de leche, but don’t worry, you’ll find ways to use it up…if you don’t wind up eating it all with a spoon first! I’ve been using it in my coffee, it’s like a creamer and sweetener in one.
Dulce de Leche Peach Tart
adapted from About.com
Dessert | Servings: 1 9″ tart (8 servings)
Prep time: 30 min | Cook time: 40 min | Total time: 1 hour 10 min
- 1 stick unsalted butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 1/4 cup flour
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp. baking powder
- 3 tbsp. unsalted butter
- 2 tbsp. dark brown sugar
- 1/4 cup dulce de leche
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 tsp. vanilla
- Pinch salt
- 1 cup pecan halves (optional)
- 4-5 large ripe peaches
- 2 tbsp. dulce de leche
- 1 tbsp. butter
- 1 tbsp. sugar
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees (F).
- Start making the crust: Cream butter and sugar for a minute or two until well mixed, but still stiff.
- Sift together flour, salt, cinnamon and baking powder. Add to the butter mixture and briefly mix with your hands until crumbly and moist enough to hold together when pressed.
- Press into an 8 or 9 inch tart pan, making sure all sides are even and strong.
- Bake for about 10 minutes or just until the sides of the crust start to brown. Remove and let cool.
- Make the filling: In a mixer or food processor add the butter, brown sugar, dulce de leche, egg yolk, vanilla, salt and pecans (if using). Mix until light colored and smooth (might still be slightly lumpy from the butter, that’s ok).
- Spread the filling into the crust.
- Blanch and peel the peaches and cut into thin (1/8 – 1/4 inch), even slices. Put the slices in a colander to drain excess juices for a minute or two.
Place the peach slices on top of the tart, overlapping each other so that they are very close together. Make circles of peach slices until the entire tart is covered. If you still have slices left, stuff them in there! This tart looks and tastes better the more peaches it has on it, otherwise the filling puffs out covers up all the beautiful peaches. I used 4 large peaches for my 9 inch tart.
- Add 2 tbsp. of dulce de leche and 1 tsbp. butter in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir until better it melted. Brush mixture evenly over the peaches. Sprinkle with 1 tsp. sugar.
- Baking from 25-30 minutes or until peaches are caramel colored and the tart is heated through. Remove and let cool.
Serve warm or at room temperature.
Look how totally gorgeous it is! It looks so divine.
Your tart looks fantastic! I might be drooling a little.
You will be happy to know you aren’t the only one who thought they didn’t like cherries and peaches because they’d only had the canned stuff – my husband had the exact same revelation this summer! It’s been a lot of fun helping him discover new foods and become a more adventurous eater 🙂
Oh my goodness I love your idea of adding cinnamon sticks while making the dulce de leche! Genius! I will for sure be doing that the next time I make it.
P.S.- Lovely tart!!
Dulce de leche and peach is a great combo!
Wow! Just when i think I’ve seen all manner of peach yumminess I stumble upon this! Absolutely wonderful – I want to make it right now! So glad I found ur site! Lovely post and pics!
This tart looks absolutely fantastic! Beautiful blog!
No, no, no, sorry, but no. You can’t mix dulce de leche with whatever you have. You can’t mix peaches with dulce de leche. Please, do NOT disrespect the dulce de leche. It’s not just a form of caramel. It’s a big deal in my part of the world and … believe me, you just don’t mix it with peaches. Don’t want to be mean, but take it from someone who has eaten dulce de leche all her life and cooks with it and grew up with it. If you do that, the dulce de leche will come to hunt you… Look at your hips in a couple of month and you’ll see. Just don’t do that to dulce de leche. Sorry again, but I just have to say something….
Well, I guess we’ll have to agree to disagree on this one. What’s the point of dulce de leche if you can’t USE it in things? Sorry, but it’s food and I’m going to use it in whatever I want! Have you ever even tried it with peaches? The whole point of this post is that you should try things even if you think you won’t like them, because sometimes you find out you were really, really wrong. Just saying….
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Oh wow! This looks beautiful and delicious! Peaches and cherries are my favorite summer fruit, will be sad once summer is gone. And I agree, try everything once!
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Congratulations on your blog! I have enjoyed several of your recipes and you have some beautiful pictures 🙂
Because of this I was a bit reluctant to post a comment about what I considered to be the odd coupling of dulce de leche and peaches… I don’t mean to belabor the point here as I also think that we should try everything once…but after discussing this with fellow dulce de leche-lovers and after seeing this RiodelaPlata post… I decided just to clarify that to those of us who were raised on dulce de leche feel quite strongly about it for a reason and would argue that some things are not meant to be mixed. As silly as it may sound it’s like an insult to our dulce de leche, and some would even claim a question of palate? Its taste is quite overpowering and is best savoured either by itself or with bread, as a filling – you’ll notice the flavors usually don’t compete but complement each other. We would not fathom mixing it with peaches…
I think if you showed this to any person from Latin America you would get some strong reactions, and especially if they come from the Southern Cone, where dulce de leche is a staple and sits on one a many altars!
But hey, para gustos… los colores! best of luck!
Ok, well thanks for explaining your feelings. The comment before just seemed to be lashing out but I can understand where you are coming from! The only thing I would say is that if you actually look at the ingredients and directions, there’s only about 1/4 cup of dulce de leche in the whole tart and it’s mixed in with some other ingredients to make the filling (butter, sugar, egg, etc.), so it not like it’s just a layer of dulce de leche that’s topped with peaches. Honestly, it’s one of the best tarts I’ve ever tasted, but I totally understand about just not liking certain food combinations. Different strokes for different folks!
Though mine didn’t turn out nearly as gorgeous as yours, the flavors were quite good. I also did a few mini tarts with plums instead of peaches, and we liked those even better. Thanks for sharing the recipe.
I did the same thing with avocado – I only tried it recently and can’t believe I’d missed out on it for so many years! This tart is gorgeous and looks delicious.
Oh man this looks delicious! And your photographs are beautiful! Everything here looks great!
I recently launched my own blog, I’d love for you to check it out and let me know what you think! 🙂 Thanks!
looks divine! I love peaches!
Great recipe! Can’t wait to make it!