Today is National PI Day, which pretty much takes the cake (ha!) for random national holidays. The fun factor of anything involving pie definitely overcomes the randomness factor and makes it definitely worth celebrating by making, buying, giving, and eating lots of pie. National Pi Day is tied with World Nutella Day in my book of fun food days. As I am spending the day in Madison, Wisconsin talking at the Wisconsin Dairy Association Convention about the importance of using social media to communicate directly with moms, I am not creating any new pie recipes today. Instead, I’ll share a gooey and decadent recipe for Shortcut Peach Tarte Tatin.
Tarte Tatin is a classic French dessert, most traditionally done with apples. The fruit is caramelized when the pie is cooked upside down. Flipping it can be tricky, but the resulting marriage of fruit, warmth, and caramel makes it all worth it. This is a cheater’s tarte tatin, made with frozen puff pastry dough, but still delicious, even if it ends up a little messy and homey looking. This is the type of dessert I want to have in that cute corner store restaurant with the farm tables I dream of having one day.
Wish me luck with the dairy farmers, or rather wish me great sessions with rich dialogue back and forth. I am a huge believer that only good can come out of bringing consumers closer to the farmers who produce both conventional and organic food. My previous trips to visit corn farmers and dairy farmers have taught me a great deal and I look forward to seeing and sharing more.
When I get home tonight to my little Baby Sophie and the rest of the gang, I will celebrate with a big slice of warm pie topped with a scoop of creamy vanilla ice cream. I hope your desserts are as sweet as mine, and I can’t wait to see all of your Pi day recipes.
- 5 Ripe Peaches
- 3 tablespoons of salted butter
- ¾ cups of brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons of vanilla extract
- 1 sheet of frozen puff pastry dough
- optional: vanilla ice cream or creme fraiche to serve
- Cut each peach into inch wide slices, leaving the skin on, removing the pit. Don’t worry about being even. This is meant to be a rustic, casual dessert.
- Spread the butter evenly on the bottom of an oven-proof skillet. This will take a little elbow grease to keep rubbing the butter in concentric circles until you have a thick pommade coating the pan.
- Sprinkle the sugar on top.
- Layer the peaches over the butter and sugar. Don’t worry about overlapping, having more peaches is better than not enough.
- Place skillet over medium heat. Cook, occasionally shifting the peaches gently to prevent burning. When the butter and sugar have turned into a bubbling, light amber caramel, take the pan off the heat.
- Immediately add the vanilla extract by drizzling it on top of the peaches.
- Lay your puff pastry sheet down. Cut off the corners to make it a very rough circle. Don’t worry too much about geometry or presentation. I guarantee your pie will be gorgeous.
- Lay the puff pastry over the caramelized peaches, tucking in the dough. Make 3 or 4 slits in the dough.
- Place pie in oven and cook for 20 to 25 minutes until crust is golden brown. Watch closely to make sure the caramel doesn’t burn, turning the peaches into cement.
- As soon as the pie is done, invert it onto a serving dish. Use silicone mitts to prevent yourself from burning but don’t wait or you will be scooping your pie out with a jack hammer.
- Serve warm with vanilla ice cream or creme fraiche.