Sep 10, 2012

A peach cake to celebrate the end of summer

As much as I miss the long July days and evening walks that inevitably ended with ice cream, I am enjoying every last bit of summer. Take fruit for example, the very last peaches and strawberries can be found these days at the farmer's market. The strawberries are sweet and perfectly ripe, the peaches are just slightly bitter, but still juicy and satisfying. I was looking for a way to enjoy them in a dessert and I came up with the idea of a peach cake. First time I baked it it was a bit of a failure. I overcooked it and it was too dry; I was also stingy with the honey and it wasn't at all sweet. But I knew it could be so much better. So I tried again, added a couple of ingredients, changed up the fours a bit, added a bit more honey and lowered the temperature of the oven. The result was a total success! It is moist, delicately sweet, slightly peppery from the ginger liquor and smooth and warm from the cinnamon. The peaches on top add just about the perfect hint of tartness (I think the peaches could be substituted with plums or apricots).
I loved it, my parents loved it, I can't wait to eat a slice with my morning tea!

Ingredients (for a square 8 inch pan):

  • 1/4 cup millet flour
  • 1/4 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/4 cup white flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 70 g butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) plain yogurt
  • 1/3 cup (80 g) ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 or 2 large peaches
  • 1 tbsp ginger root liquor (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350° F/175°C. Line a 9-inch square pan with parchment paper.
In a bowl combine flours, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt; whisk briefly and set aside. In another bowl mix ricotta cheese and yogurt until creamy, whisk in the eggs, melted butter, honey and liquor (if you are using it). Add the dry ingredient and mix well with a whisk or a spatula. Pour batter into the pan. Slice the peach and arrange gently onto the batter.
Bake for 30 to 40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean.

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