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Scored some fresh apricots this weekend! Suggestions ...

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I have about 3-4 pounds of fresh apricots a friend gave me. Any suggestions ... I was thinking about an apricot upside down cake. Anything else out there?

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  1. I make a fresh apricot pie using Ruth Reichl's method that I saw on Diary of a Foodie. You'll need an unbaked pie shell (your favorite--I'm lazy these days and love the flavor and texture of the frozen Pilsbury one with Beverly Johnson's face on it. It even has lard, just like my homemade crust. But I digress.)

    Start with about 2 pounds of ripe but not mushy apricots. Tear your apricots (this is so much fun!) into halves and pile them into the pie shell.

    Make streusel with 1 stick cold butter, 1/2 cup sugar, and 1/2 cup AP flour, I add a good bit of freshly grated nutmeg, too. Rub ingredients together with fingers to make nice even clumps. Sprinkle over apricots in pie shell.

    Place pan on heavy sheet pan, place in very hot oven (425 or 450, depending how trustworthy your oven is when it's time to turn down the heat) for about 10 minutes to set the crust, then reduce the heat to 350 and bake until pastry is golden, about 35-40 minutes.

    This glorious and rustic and hard to share, so make sure you really love the people with whom you share this! Serves me or about 4--it's that good.

    5 Replies
    1. re: marthasway

      Thanks marthasway ... i am making your recipe this evening once it cools down a bit. I bought the piecrust you recommended too. Sounds delish ... can't wait.

      1. re: marthasway

        I'm making your apricot pie now - it's in the oven. Yum - 10 more minutes + cooling time :^)

        1. re: marthasway

          I made this on Friday and it was amazing! My husband, who responded with a resounding "meh" when I brought home an enormous bag of apricots, told me post-pie that he was rethinking his entire position on furry fruit. Thank you so, so much for sharing. Also, it was stunning to look at, all of those apricot halves shining golden through the streusel. I have a decent photo that I keep meaning to post, but haven't managed it yet.

          I did have one question, though: my streusel didn't brown much at all (although it did seem "set"). As I said, it was still beautiful, and tasted fantastic, but do you mind my asking if that's how yours normally comes out? I was short one tablespoon of butter, and temperatures in my ancient oven are wildly, wildly variable, so I'm wondering if either of those things affected the outcome, or if it's supposed to be pale. Thanks again for a great recipe!

          1. re: darklyglimmer

            I'm so happy y'all loved it, too! It sounds as though you did it exactly right.. This streusel, in my experience, doesn't brown, since it's so short. Even though I like the pastry dough brown, the crumby goodness doesn't go beyond a pale sand.

            1. re: marthasway

              That's reassuring. There's a very narrow sweet spot in my oven where things are neither underdone nor charred and I often miss it (although I'm getting better). Thanks!

        2. I made apricot pineapple jam a few weeks ago, and it is wonderful! Will have to make another batch while they are still in season.

          http://operagirlcooks.com/2010/05/24/...

          1. Apricot jam with amaretto. Yummy over vanilla ice cream.

            1. Mascerate in some sugar and aged balsamic vinegar. Then spoon over pound cake, ice cream, or if you're so inclined some Italian apricot custard (aka Albicocche nelle Chicchere)

              7 Replies
              1. re: ipsedixit

                oooh that sounds good! will try when I get home to my balsamic vinegar.

                1. re: marthasway

                  I have an apricot tree in the backyard, and I know all about "fresh" apricots.

                  Fresh ripe apricots + sugar + balsamic = life altering.

                  1. re: ipsedixit

                    An apricot tree in your backyard? I must not covet, I must not covet!

                    1. re: marthasway

                      Sometimes it's more of a curse than a blessing.

                      Rotten apricots on the ground not only attracts stray cats and squirrels, but possum! Have you ever seen a possum? It's like a rat on the Barry Bonds' diet -- a rat bred on steroids and HGH mixed in with some of overripe apricots!

                      1. re: ipsedixit

                        those possums hiss and like figs, too

                        btw - big thank you to marthasway for the apricot pie recipe - Delicious!

                        1. re: Cynsa

                          I'm so glad you enjoyed it! I've done it with plums, too, but the inherent lusciousness of apricots are perfect!

                          I'm only too familiar with possums, having grown up in South Texas, where they're also known to get into attics in the winter--blech!

                        2. re: ipsedixit

                          LOL! Thanks for the images! In so many of my old southern cookbooks, recipes abound for possum, mostly cooked with sweet potatoes, but I'm afraid that would put me off my beloved sweet potatoes forever!

                2. I have made a Morrocan lamb stew with apricots and prunes - you should be able to google something.

                  1. Last summer's surprise best ice cream was roasted apricot. It absolutely blew me away.

                    1. Have I got a recipe for you! I've been getting good apricots lately and have been obsessed with this coffee cake... Not too sweet, honeyed from the macerated apricots, moist from the buttermilk... Heaven!

                      Fresh Apricot Coffee Cake:

                      1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
                      1/2 teaspoon salt
                      2 teaspoons baking powder
                      1/2 cup sugar
                      1 egg
                      4 tablespoons butter
                      ¾ cup buttermilk
                      1.5 teaspoon vanilla
                      ¼ tsp almond extract
                      2 cups pitted, diced apricots
                      1/4 cup sugar to toss with the apricots

                      Topping:
                      1.5 tablespoons demara sugar (I used Sugar in the Raw)
                      1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

                      Preheat oven to 375 degrees
                      Toss the diced apricots with 1/4 cup of sugar and let sit until juicy
                      In a large bowl, mix flour, salt and baking powder
                      In a separate bowl, cream 1/2 cup sugar, butter, and egg until light and fluffy
                      Mix in buttermilk and vanilla until blended
                      Pour the wet mixture into the flour mixture and beat just until smooth
                      Spread batter evenly into a greased, 8-inch square baking pan
                      Sprinkle the apricots and their juices over the batter
                      Dust the whole thing with the cinnamon sugar topping

                      Bake approximately 40 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.

                      1. This is a fantastic tart.. very 'continental' with the hint of almond:

                        http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                        1. I havent made these yet, but saw them being made on tv yesterday and they looked good: http://www.myviva.ca/Recipes/Baked-Ap...

                          1. Halved and pitted they freeze very well.

                            I almost always make pie or compote for panna cotta.