Serves a Crowd

Petaluma Peach Tart

August 20, 2011
3 Ratings
  • Serves 8
Author Notes

I grew up in Petaluma, a small town in Sonoma county before Sonoma and neighboring counties embraced the monoculture of the grape. Sure, there are still lots of apples, berries, pears and peaches, but not nearly as many.Then, we didn't have to go very far to find an orchard or berry farm to buy fresh fruit. In the Napa valley in the midst of an ocean of grapevines is a little two acre plot where Dr Wendell Dinwiddie has been growing peaches for almost 20 years. I remember being amazed when he planted those fruit trees in grape country! He planted the varieties of peaches sequentially so a new variety ripens perfectly about every two weeks all summer.There are 8 varieties. I have been making a version of this tart for many years. It marries my favorite flavors of ripe peaches and almonds. The pistachios give the tart a little crunch and a pop of green.The juices of the peaches saturate the crust , giving the tart bottom crust a soft texture full of juice. . (***Note: Some varieties of peaches ripen about the same time , so unfortunately we do not have 4 months of uninterrupted peaches!) —dymnyno

What You'll Need
  • Almond Tart Crust
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 1 cup almond meal plus 2 tablespoons for tossing with the peaches
  • 1 tablespoon almond extract
  • pinch of salt
  • Peaches and Topping
  • 4 or 5 large freestone peaches (I used Fay Elberta)
  • 6 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 4 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 cup pistachios, shelled
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon grated ginger
  1. Mix all the crust ingredients. Press the mixture up the sides and over the bottom of the tart pan. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 10 minutes. Remove and cool a bit. I used a tart pan with a removable bottom. Blind baking makes the crust easier to fill.
  2. Peel and slice the peaches into thick slices. I always use "freestone" peaches because they can easily be freed from the pit. "Cling" peaches really cling to the pit which can be really messy. (this I know from experience!) Put the peach slices in a colander and let drain for about 30 minutes. Then if you like a more dense filling, toss the peaches in a couple tablespoons of almond meal/flour.
  3. Arrange the peaches in a circle around and spiraling until the entire surface is filled with peach slices.
  4. To make the topping mix the butter, sugar, egg yolks, pistachios, lemon zest and grated ginger together. Keep blending the mixture (I use my hands) until all the butter in incorporated.
  5. Evenly spread the topping over all the peaches. Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 45 minutes. (I preheat a rimmed sheet pan and put the tart on the pan in case dripping of fruit juice occurs) The bottom crust will absorb a little peach juice.The topping will become custard like. If you like,serve with whipped cream(but not necessary).

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • dymnyno
  • creamtea
  • Midge
  • Lulussweetsecrets
  • lorigoldsby

27 Reviews

dymnyno September 9, 2011
I purposely did NOT want ginger to be a predominant flavor of this tart...just a whisper!
themissingingredient September 9, 2011
You are right. The almond and peach flavors are perfect with just a hint of ginger and lemon. I made this for the holiday.
creamtea September 2, 2011
Beautiful! We were just at Point Reyes and also took a drive up the other side, Tomales bay. Kept seeing signs for Petaluma, but we had such a jam-packed travel plan there was not time to head up there. Next time, I'll come armed with the knowledge of Dr. Dinwiddie's orchard!
Midge August 25, 2011
What an amazing combo. Love this!
Lulussweetsecrets August 25, 2011
This Tart is beautiful! I love it!
woody August 25, 2011
I love peaches; especially tree ripened ones. This sounds amazing.
lorigoldsby August 23, 2011
16 weeks of fresh peaches??? lucky you! no wonder you have this amazing recipe!
dymnyno August 23, 2011
It is a small orchard,there is overlap on the available ripenings so it's not four months of peaches (unfortunately) .and, this year is pretty much a disaster due to late rain during flower. And there is such a demand for his peaches,you have to be first in line, I usually miss out! It IS refreshing to see his pretty orchard in the midst of all the vineyards, ( and I am a vintner).
dymnyno August 23, 2011
More than one variety ripens at a time...but they all don't ripen at the same time.
meetsaucygirl August 22, 2011
I love the idea of the almond shell and the addition of the almond extract sounds divine. That's one of my favorite scents and flavors! Do you think if you used a nut with a higher fat content that you wouldn't have to use as much butter?
HomegrownTravels August 22, 2011
This is a beautiful tart. I can't wait for summer to come to Australia so I can get my hands on peaches for this!
drbabs August 21, 2011
dymnyno August 21, 2011
Why thank you, Dr Babs!
Bevi August 20, 2011
How lovely. I read about a peach jam with some pistachios thrown in for flavor, and this is obviously a marriage made in heaven!
dymnyno August 21, 2011
Thanks...flavor and that fabulous color!
Sagegreen August 20, 2011
Simply beautiful!
dymnyno August 21, 2011
Thanks!!! Love to hear such praise from you!
DueSpaghetti August 20, 2011
This is simply beautiful. I love it when pastries are are lovely to look at as they are to eat. Complimenti!
dymnyno August 20, 2011
Thanks, I am a big fan of your recipes.
aargersi August 20, 2011
GORGEOUS! that's all I got
dymnyno August 20, 2011
thanks...I trade you for one of yours!
TheWimpyVegetarian August 20, 2011
I'm allergic to nuts, but this is soooo gorgeous!!! If I were going to cheat, this would be where I'd do it!!!
dymnyno August 20, 2011
Thanks, Susan. Hope to see you soon.
Lizthechef August 20, 2011
So pretty - and I love the pistachios with the lemon zest!
dymnyno August 20, 2011
Thanks...have a nice dinner tonight!
healthierkitchen August 20, 2011
This is beautiful! I love the combination of flavors.
dymnyno August 20, 2011
My favorite flavors and the farmers' market was overflowing with peaches today!