Summer Peaches with Baked Meringue

Summer peaches need very little enhancement. Here’s a play on “peaches and cream” with warm baked peaches topped with marshmallowy whipped meringue. It’s a beautiful and simple showstopper for late-summer parties.

I have an adage when it comes to peaches: Travel to the peaches, don’t ask them to travel to you. And when they do arrive as close to home as you can find them, make this simple dessert of peaches topped with meringue.

Buy Fresh, Local Peaches!

I love you, California, but your peaches don’t like to travel, particularly across country. Years of disappointment, spurred by my impatience to grab the first peaches I see in the supermarket, have finally taught me this lesson.

Since I live in Massachusetts, I have to wait until the second half of July for decent local peaches to arrive. (I will often hedge my bets and fall for New Jersey peaches with pretty good luck!)

Sometimes you can find good supermarket peaches imported from other states, but the only way to find out is to buy a few and try them out. If they’re good, go back for more.

With Peaches, Keep It Simple

After eating your fill of peaches on their own, start on the desserts. Since peaches are so juicy and sweet, and their season is so short, they deserve special treatment.

And by that I mean, almost no treatment at all.

Enter this rustic skillet dessert. Toss some sliced peaches (no need to peel them) in brown butter and brown sugar, infuse them with vanilla and almond, and top them with meringue.

After baking, the peaches soften slightly and release their juices. The meringue topping is slightly crisp on the outside but soft and marshmallowy on the inside.

We all know the flavor combination of peaches and cream, but here, the sweet meringue plays off the tart peaches in a new way that lets the tart peaches shine. Be sure to have a bowl and a big spoon on hand to scoop up the soupy juice.

A Versatile Summer Dessert

But wait, there’s more! This is a great recipe to use all kinds of summer stone fruits: nectarines, plums, pluots or apricots, alone or in combination. Throw in some blueberries or raspberries if you have them. These are all great choices.

In other words, this is a “fly by the seat of your pants” dessert. Its burnished cloud of meringue on top has a huge wow factor. A pretty good bang for a minimal amount of effort!

More Ways to Enjoy Summer Peaches!

  • Peach Galette
  • Old Fashioned Peach Pie
  • Peach Cobbler
  • Skillet Peach Crisp with Pecans and Ginger
  • Peach Blueberry Cake

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