Ahh.. peach season! What a sexy, sweet treat. Every year we pick peaches and nectarines at a local farm. Ripe, juicy, fuzzy little things. You really cannot beat the taste of fresh, in season fruit. Here in New Jersey, peaches taste good 2 month out of year when they are local and fresh. The rest of the time you get the green, under-ripe, rubber tasting, supermarket variety. So in my zeal to indulge in the best, we picked too much, I now have 50 pounds of peaches and nectarines in my kitchen.
Oh well, after making Peach Gelato, Sweet wine and peach Sorbet, Peach and Nectarine Sorbet and Peach Jam, I still have some left, time to get creative.
My son’s yacht club has a final “Sail by” this week. The parents get together, bring some food, and watch the kids sail their boats for show. I wanted to bake an easy, light desert, including peaches of course.
This is one of my favorite cheesecake recipes. I am not a fan of NY style cheese cake, I like the crumblier Italian versions made with ricotta or the French goat cheese one. This works well with any fruit compote on top, I’ve made it with fresh berries, cherries, you name it.
For the cheesecake:
12 oz. Of good quality goat cheese
¾ cup of granulated sugar
3 tbs all-purpose flour
Zest of 2 lemons
1 tbs fresh squeezed lemon juice
6 eggs separated
½ tbs of Lemon extract or Fiori Di Sicilia ( see note)
For the topping:
3 ripe but not mushy peaches
½ cup of peach or apricot jam
½ cup of water
1 cup granulated sugar
Preheat the oven to 350F. Butter and flour a 9 inch spring-form pan.
Wisk together on low speed the goat cheese, sugar, lemon zest, lemon extract and lemon juice. Add egg yolks 1 at a time, making sure that each one is well incorporated before adding another.
Wisk in the flour. In a separate bowl, beat egg whites to medium peaks. Fold the egg whites with a spatula into the goat cheese mixture.
You will now have a light and fluffy lemon scented batter. Pour into the prepared pan and smooth out the top with a spatula.
Bake at 350F on the middle rack, for about 40 min or until a toothpick comes out clean. When done, turn off the oven and let stand for another 5 to 7 min before taking the cake out.
Prepare the peach topping. Combine peach jam, water and sugar in a saucepan. Bring to a boil. Skin, pit and cut the peaches into thin wedges. Poach the peach wedges in the sauce for 1 min, be careful not to cook them too much or they will fall apart. Set aside the peaches to cool and reduce the syrup to a glaze consistency. It should be very thick and glossy.
When the cake cools completely, arrange the peaches on top and glaze with prepared syrup
Note: Fiori Di Sicilia is wonderful flavoring extract from Arthur King Flour Company. I am not sure if anyone sells it. It has a nice lemony flavor and is great for pound cakes, cheese cakes, anything that calls for lemon extract.