Kentucky Fried Peaches

In my experience, country-style restaurants (particularly barbecue pits) in both Georgia and Arkansas seem to pride themselves on small fried peach pies and turnovers, but it’s only in Kentucky where I’ve come across these spicy fried peaches served almost without exception atop large scoops of vanilla ice cream. One restaurant in Louisville even went so far as to have waiters very ceremoniously flame the peaches tableside in chafing dishes, perhaps just another indication of how our noble peaches are revered no matter where or how they’re prepared. Served with slices of homemade pound cake, these fried peaches couldn’t be easier to produce, provided you pay careful attention to the flaming and don’t singe every hair off your head.


  • 2 large firm ripe peaches
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
  • teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 ounce bourbon
  • Vanilla ice cream


Peel the peaches with a sharp paring knife, cut them in half, remove the seeds, and pat the halves dry with paper towels.

In a large enameled or stainless-steel skillet, combine the butter, two sugars, and cinnamon over moderate heat and stir well till the butter melts. Add the peaches cut side down and cook till the bottoms are nicely glazed, about 2 minutes. Turn them over, baste with the liquid, and cook 2 minutes longer.

Meanwhile, warm the bourbon in a tiny pot, ignite it carefully, and, when the flames die, pour over the peaches. Slide the pan back and forth till the flames die, and serve immediately over scoops of ice cream.