There are so many things to love about summer. To me, one of the absolute best things about summer is buying and using locally grown fruits and vegetables in my baking. This is a win/win situation. Buying locally grown produce supports the farmers in my area who work so hard to grow beautiful food. And using locally grown produce in my baking results in cakes, breads and pies that taste incredible because the fruit was hanging on the tree in the orchard just hours before I bought it. It doesn't get much fresher than that!
This week, I was thrilled to learn that my favorite locally grown peaches are now available. Peaches equal summer to me, their fuzzy skin protecting juicy golden nuggets of sunshine. In search of a different recipe for peach pie in order to feature my favorite summer fruit, I turned to Pinterest where I came across a recipe for Fresh Peach Pound Cake. The photo of the cake uploaded by the pinner, Carrie Groneman of amothersshadow.com, made my mouth water. So I visited the site and read the recipe which sounded delicious. I decided to give it a try.
Good is not how I would describe Fresh Peach Pound Cake. No. Good is simply not good enough. This cake is FANTASTIC!! Butter, sugar, six eggs, vanilla and almond extracts, sour cream and flour, salt and baking soda. And, of course, the star of the show -- diced fresh peaches. THREE CUPS OF DICED FRESH PEACHES! WHOA!
Ordinarily, I do not make any modifications to a recipe the first time that I make it but in the case of Fresh Peach Pound Cake I made an exception. I noticed that there was no spice called for in the recipe. I understand the reason for this -- you want the peaches to be front and center here. However, nutmeg pairs beautifully with peaches. When used in the proper amount, nutmeg will enhance the peach flavor. (But use caution here - nutmeg can be overwhelming when added with a heavy hand.) I decided to add one teaspoon of freshly grated nutmeg to the cake batter. (Note- for the best flavor, always grate nutmeg fresh with a Microplane.)
One of the things which really appeals to me about this recipe is that granulated sugar is used to coat the greased cake pan instead of the usual flour. The sugar gives the cake an almost crispy sweet crust. I decided to add a little bit of nutmeg to the sugar coating as well to further highlight the peaches.
The batter for this cake mixes up quickly for it is a fairly simple cake. After carefully folding in the diced peaches, spoon the batter into the prepared cake pan and bake for 60 to 70 minutes until a cake tester comes out nearly clean. Allow the cake to cool in the pan for 15 minutes before turning it out on a rack to cool. Doesn't that look yummy?
Fresh peach pound cake is delicious as is. It doesn't need frosting. Cut a slice and serve it with your favorite drink - coffee, tea, milk? The choice is yours. If you want to honor one of summer's most wonderful treats, bake up a Fresh Peach Pound Cake. It's peachy keen!