When it’s too hot to turn on the oven, a no-bake recipe is the simplest route to a delectable summer dessert. And what could be more delicious than sweet nectarines paired with vanilla and white chocolate custard creme? Piled into a buttery pistachio and cardamom biscuit base with thyme and honey butter drizzle, there’s plenty of reason to get excited. It’s a peaches and cream celebration with seasonality at its core.
If last week’s post on cake disasters put a dampener on your baking endeavours, this recipe is for you. The room for error here is practically nil. It’s more of an assembly job really. Taking my cue from the team over at BBC Lifestyle, the brief was to create an uncomplicated dessert to accompany a relaxed al fresco summer lunch or barbecue. For me, this means less time buried in the kitchen and more time lounging outdoors clinking chilled mojitos. A girl can dream, right? A savvy hostess knows when to turn up the ante and when to keep it simple. At the end of a busy year, the latter is definitely the better option.
I make the base for this nectarine tart in much the same way as a classic cheesecake crust. The addition of pistachio and cardamom hints evocatively of Middle Eastern delicacies. It’s subtle but just enough to peak the palate. I love combining what would usually be a savoury element with something sweet. The peaches are pan-roasted in honey, butter and fresh thyme. The result is a herbaceously sticky glaze. Roasting the fruit is more about caramelisation than cooking the nectarines until completely softened so be careful here.
If I had to describe this peaches and cream dessert, I’d say it’s an alabaster-cheek tart, flushed with peachy warmth. The flavours are fresh and bright. They literally sing when combined together. Each mouthful tastes like a kiss of summer. Dessert is the lingering taste after a memorable meal and should then by all accounts be, extraordinary good.
Remember to catch the next episode of The Great South African Bake Off on BBC Lifestyle Channel, Tuesday 20h00.
This post has been sponsored by BBC Lifestyle
Nectarine tart with thyme and honey butter drizzle
- 160g coconut biscuits
- 1/4 cup pistachio nuts, toasted
- 5 cardamom seeds, finely crushed
- 2 tablespoons castor sugar
- 90g butter, melted
White chocolate custard creme
- 250ml custard, at room temperature
- 100g white chocolate, melted and cooled
- 250ml double cream
- 2 tablespoons icing sugar, sifted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pan roasted nectarines
- 8 nectarines, halved, pitted and sliced into segments
- 45ml (3 tablespoons) butter
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 2 stems thyme, de-stalked
- 1 tablespoon pistachios, roasted and roughly chopped
- For the base, place the biscuits, pistachios and cardamom in a processor and pulse until fine.
- Add the castor sugar and butter and blitz to combine.
- Press the biscuit mixture into a 10 x 35 cm loose-bottom tart tin. Chill until firm.
- For the nectarines, melt the butter and honey together in a large based pan.
- Place the nectarines segments in the honey butter and caramelised on both sides. Scatter with thyme and set aside to cool.
- For the creme, combine the custard and the melted chocolate.
- Whip the cream, vanilla and icing sugar together until soft peak stage.
- Gently fold through the custard and chocolate mixture.
- To assemble the tart, un-mould the base. Spoon the custard creme into the base and smooth over. Chill for 30 minutes.
- Pile the fruit over the creme and drizzle with remaining honey butter.
- Scatter with pistachios and serve.