Nectarine Buttermilk Buckle

Nectarine Buttermilk Buckle

It kind of sneaks up on you doesn’t it?  The end of summer, that is…One morning you wake up and realize it’s not daylight anymore when the alarm clock chimes (“Zero Dark Five-Thirty” is how my husband likes to refer to it).  So, it’s in the spirit of these shortened days that  I’m doing my best to enjoy all of summer’s special stone fruits, before they disappear again.

Nectarine Buttermilk Buckle

This week I found the most luscious and delicious nectarines in the supermarket.  They were such perfectly flavorful fruit, ripe, sweet, and juicy.  So, while we were enjoying them sliced and eaten, as is, this idea for an old-fashioned fruit dessert began to take shape in my mind.  A buckle consists of a buttery cake, strewn with fresh fruit, and topped with streusel.  As the cake bakes up and around the fruit it “buckles”, and the streusel becomes crisp and golden.  The cake is a study in textures and flavor, and it perfectly showcases these very special nectarines.  This is another summer dessert that is equally welcome early in the day, at breakfast or brunch.  Hurry now; get to the market and choose the best stone fruit you can find and make a buckle.  Before we know it we’ll be back to pumpkins and apples.

Nectarine Buttermilk Buckle

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Nectarine Buttermilk Buckle

Buttery, almond-flavored cake, topped with juicy stone fruit, and crowned with a crunchy streusel. A great dessert or breakfast pastry.
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 8

Ingredients

  • For the streusel:
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter , cold, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  • For the cake:
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup almond flour
  • 2 level teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 egg plus 1 egg yolk
  • 1 teaspoon orange blossom flower water (or substitute 1/2 teaspoon finely grated orange zest)
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 1 1/2 cups diced nectarines , or other ripe stone fruit.

Instructions

  1. Make the streusel: Whisk together the flour, sugar, and cinnamon in a small bowl. With a fork or pastry cutter, blend in the cold butter until the mixture is crumbly. Set aside in the refrigerator while you make the cake batter.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 9-inch, deep dish pie plate (you can also use a 9x9-inch baking dish or a 10-inch cast iron skillet).
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flours, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, cream the softened butter with the granulated and brown sugars. Beat until light and fluffy. Add the egg and egg yolk and blend together. Add the orange flower water (or grated orange zest, if using) and mix in.
  5. Add the dry ingredients, alternately with the buttermilk, mixing gently until just combined.
  6. Scrape the batter into the prepared baking dish and scatter the fruit evenly atop.
  7. Scatter the streusel topping over the diced fruit
  8. Place the dish in the oven and bake for 40 to 50 minutes, or until the cake is baked at the center and the topping is golden brown. If the edges begin to brown before the center is baked, cover them with a pie guard or some foil strips.
  9. Remove to a rack to cool. Serve with ice cream, if you like. Leftovers can be stored, covered, at room temperature for a day or two.

 

 

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