With a name like this, who can resist? If you have fantasized about your (or someone else’s) mother’s peach pie, then this is a dessert to make as soon as peaches hit their prime. It is homey yet sophisticated, which is what we would all like to be.

Don’t waste your time using peaches that have no aroma. To taste terrific, peaches must be fabulously fragrant, right then and there in the market when you are lifting them to your nose.

This dessert, still wearing the warmth of the oven, is more than enough for the stuff of dreams, but if you want to gild the lily, add a scoop of ginger, lemon, or mango ice cream.

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Ingredients

  • 8 firm but ripe, fragrant peaches (about 3 pounds)
  • Finely grated zest of 1 scrubbed lemon
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • Prebaked Tart Shell, partially baked
  • Hazelnut Streusel Topping

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Move an oven rack to the top position.
  2. Cut each peach lengthwise in half, pit, and quarter each half into wedges. Combine the fruit with the lemon zest and lemon juice in a heavy non-aluminum saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the peaches are wilted and soft, 5 to 8 minutes.
  3. Drain the peaches, reserving ¼ cup of the cooking juice. Return the juice to the saucepan and stir in the sugar and cornstarch. Cook over medium heat, stirring until the mixture turns glossy and slightly thick, 3 to 4 minutes. Pour the mixture over the peaches and toss gently to blend.
  4. Spoon the peaches into the tart shell. Sprinkle the streusel evenly over the fruit, keeping the streusel about ½ inch from the rim. (It will expand when baked.)
  5. Bake until the streusel is golden, 45 to 55 minutes. Remove to a rack to cool.
  6. Serve the tart warm or cool.
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