I refuse to live on iced melon alone for the next month, (except in this cocktail). I want DESSERT.
Shortcrust pastry would be too heavy in this wonderful Amazonian climate, but filo works perfectly: it's light and crisp and the perfect vehicle for a mountain of cool, pistachio mascarpone. Don't fuss with making it yourself: I cheated and bought a packet last time I trying to climb into the chiller cabinet.
Peach & Pistachio Tartlets (Makes 4-5)
You will need:
For the tart cases:
- 1 packet of pre-made filo pastry
For the pistachio filling:
- 100g shelled pistachio nuts
- 25g butter
- 250g mascarpone
- 2 tbsp icing sugar
For the peaches:
- 4 ripe peaches
- 1 tbsp white wine (optional)
- 1 heaped tbsp vanilla sugar (or you could use muscovado)
The tart cases:
- Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas mark 4. Lightly grease four 9cm round tartlet tins.
- Half the sheets of filo, then layer them into the tartlet tins, overlapping the edges and trimming if necessary until you have built up four or five layers of pastry: enough to be sturdy.
- Lightly prick the base a few times with the tip of a sharp knife.
- Bake for 8-10 minutes, until the pastry has turned light golden and crisp.
- Cool on a wire rack.
The grilled peaches:
- Cut the peaches into thin slices, leaving the skin on.
- Place onto a baking tray and sprinkle with the white wine, or whatever you're drinking, if using, and the sugar.
- Grill for around 3 minutes (depending on how powerful your grill is) until the edges are beginning to brown lightly. Keep an eye on them to make sure they don't catch.
- Place on a plate to cool.
The pistachio filling:
- Blanch 100g of shelled pistachios in boiling water for 2 minutes, then drain, plunge into cold water and drain again.
- In a blender or with a hand-blender, pulse the nuts together with the butter and 1 tablespoon of mascarpone. (If you don't have a blender you could crush them in a zip-lock bag or with a pestle and mortar)
- In a separate bowl, beat the mascarpone slightly to loosen it.
- Fold in the pistachio mixture, then sift in the icing sugar until combined. (You may want to add more or less to taste).
- Spoon the pistachio filling into the tart cases, smoothing over the top.
- Layer the peaches in a circle, and decorate with a few chopped pistachio nuts and a dusting of icing sugar.