Lord, how long is summer going to be? I mean, I love the slow, lazy days, don’t get me wrong. But a girl can be lazy and cool, right? What good is being lazy if I can’t even think the thoughts I had set aside to think about later? My brains are addled like hot scrambled eggs, and full sentences seem to clump in the channel between my thoughts and my voice. I’ve been pointing more lately, barely talking at all. It’s just so incredibly hot.
On most days, even my necklace heats up in the fierce sunshine and burns the skin my neck…which is disturbing Lord, because you know I wear a cross. Are you not in charge of summer? Did you delegate this Hellish season to someone else? Is burning me with my own cross a long distance message from The Hot Place? Drat, it seems like all I have are questions. Addled, I tell you.
Peaches are proof that the universe still cares about hot people on earth. The frigid, glacier-like grocery store has golden mountainous alps of gorgeous, ripe peaches right now. (Yodel-ay-hee-hoo…) In the past, those whopping great big peaches were mealy, and flavorless, but no more! This year, the peach people have hit the nail on the head. Even the ugly peaches were delicious this year. (Why did we buy ugly peaches? No clue. There were plump, garnet and flesh colored nectarines right next to the rather ashen peach specimens that we selected, but luckily, the greyish peaches tasted better than they looked.)
Pan de Elote is a favorite across Latin America, and I thought the peaches would be a dreamy, rustic combination for a light summer dessert for a supper party. I asked my nephew what he thought of the Peachy Pan de Elote, and he quipped “It’s good with ice cream.” Well, yeah. What isn’t? It was delicious fresh, but taking the leftovers back home, I figured out how to nudge the pan to the next level.
The true genius of Fresh Peach Pan de Elote is toasting a split hunk of the day old cornbread on a cast iron comal, or griddle. The butter browns ever so slightly to make a classic beurre noisette (browned butter – omg my favorite flavor) before it is absorbed into the toothy crumby cake. The Honey Butter topping is just too much, which is just my style. Is there such a thing as too much butter? Jamais. Jamás. Never.
Pan de Elote is a sweet corn bread that is different than the more savory Southern corn bread we enjoy in the USA. It’s not so much a dessert as a sweet snack, but if you prefer, Pan de Elote could possibly work as a quick side bread for a salad-y ladies luncheon type of menu. Very light, but satisfying.
This one’s a keeper, but I will probably make it ahead of time, and toast it for a lazy Sunday brunch after church.Print
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (187 gr)
1 tbsp. baking powder (15gr)
1/4 tsp salt (1gr)
1 1/2 cups yellow cornmeal (210 gr)
1/2 cup vegetable oil (125ml)
3/4 cup sugar (150gr)
2 large eggs, beaten
1 cup buttermilk (240ml)
4 ripe peaches, peeled and cut into 1″ cubes
1 stick butter (4oz/115gr), softened at room temperature
1/4 cup honey (57ml)
Extra butter for toasting
Grease and flour a 9″x 13″ (33cm x 23cm) baking pan. Heat your oven to 400°F/204°C.
Using a medium mixing bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and cornmeal. Set aside.
Place the vegetable oil and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Using a hand-held electric mixer, beat in the eggs. Add alternate spoonfuls of the dry flour mixture and the buttermilk, and continue to beat with the electric mixer, until well combined, about 2 minutes. Stir in the peaches.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan, and bake for 35-40 minutes, until golden brown. Test with a toothpick for doneness. Serve warm with Honey Butter.
To make Honey Butter – Place the softened butter on a shallow plate. Pour over the honey, and mash together with a fork. Use a rubber spatula to gather the mash of butter, and transfer to a small serving bowl.
To toast the Pan de Elote, heat a cast iron griddle on the stove to a medium low temperature. Simply split a square into 2 halves, and place a pat of butter on each half. Flip the split slice face side down onto the hot griddle, and allow to toast for 3-4 minutes, until the desired level of toastiness. You can also place the square of butter directly on the griddle, and place the split slice directly on the melting butter.
Making Ranch Dressing at the Ranch If you are ever at a party with a bunch of chefs, and you need some sort of ice breaker comment, just make a joke about ranch dressing. It’s a guaranteed laugh… sort of an inside joke with food service professionals. Ranch dressing started it’s rookie career on top […]
Sopapillas are pretty much the state bird of New Mexico, and occasionally you will see them in Texas restaurants, although it’s pretty rare. I have never seen sopapillas anywhere in Latin America, but I hear they are made in Sonora, the northernmost Mexican state that borders New Mexico. There is also fry bread, which is […]
Hot, Hot, Hot! It’s averaging 99°F (37°C) here in Texas, and I simply do not want to cook. At all. Which is like saying I don’t want to breathe. In fact, filling my lungs with hot summer air doesn’t even sound refreshing. Developing a pair of gills sounds nice, doesn’t it? Cool water flowing through […]