Peach buckle cake is a wonderful, homey dessert which makes the most of fresh, summertime peaches! Like crisps and cobblers, buckles are a wonderful traditional American-style dessert. Nothing fancy about peach buckle, but oh so tasty.
Last summer when peach season approached, I made a Summertime Peach Cake, which was very tasty and quite elegant as well. This year I thought a traditional American rustic fruit dessert was what I wanted. The only question was should I make a cobbler or a buckle or a pandowdy or a grunt (love the name of that one! 🙂 ) or a brown betty? These desserts are all part of my New England upbringing, and I hope to bring many versions of all these recipes to my pages here in the future.
This time the buckle won, since I wanted the combination of the moist cake below and the streusel topping above, and I decided to make it with peaches instead of the traditional blueberries, mainly because peaches were on sale. As I was making this, I thought about the Rhubarb Coffee Cake I made recently and realized it’s basically a buckle too! I layered the fruit over the cake in that recipe, but it’s another variation on the theme of a moist and simple cake mixed with fruit below and a crumb topping above.
Years ago I hardly ever made desserts with peaches or nectarines. Silly, huh? I just couldn’t be bothered with peeling them, but then I realized that you don’t have to peel peaches when you bake them. Apples, yes. Peel those! Pears, maybe. Some desserts I do and some I don’t. But peaches? Almost never do you need to worry about it, so I don’t, and I especially don’t when I’m making a rustic dessert.
Not that it turns that peeling peaches is difficult. It is actually quite easy. A few moments in boiling water and you’re done. But it’s nice not have that extra step in my way when I want peach buckle and I want it now. ?
Now, as far as making this more healthy? Some whole wheat flour in the mix would probably be quite lovely and I would go there in future. However, when I pulled out my buckle recipe and went to make it the first time this year, I tried to go all healthy. Switched out the refined sugars, used lots of whole wheat and all that. It was a sad buckle and I was strenuously lobbied by the family to go back to my original recipe. So I did. This recipe isn’t going to help you reduce your refined sugars or your butter intake or give you all sorts of whole grains, but it is very tasty and gets thumbs up all around here.
– Happy Eating, Annemarie
- ⅓ cup all-purpose flour
- ⅓ cup rolled oats
- ⅓ cup light brown sugar, packed
- ¼ tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp table salt
- 6 tbsp unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- 1½ cup (7½ oz) all-purpose flour
- 1½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp table salt
- ⅔ cup granulated sugar
- 6 tbsp unsalted butter, softened but still cool
- ½ tsp orange zest
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs
- 4 cups diced peaches, ½ inch dice
- Adjust oven rack to the lower middle position. Preheat oven to 350F.
- Butter a 9-inch cake pan or springform pan. Dust pan with flour, shaking out the excess.
- For the topping: In the bowl of a food processor, process flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt until combined, a few short pulses. Add butter and process until mixture resembles wet sand, about 20 1 second pulses. Refrigerate until needed.
- For the cake: Whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- In a standing mixer with a flat beater, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until light, about 3 minutes. Switch the mixer to medium low and add the orange zest and vanilla. Then add the eggs, one at a time, until well mixed, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as needed. The mixture will look 'curdled' at this point.
- Reduce the speed to low and slowly add the flour mixture. Mix until it is nearly combined, but you still have a few streaks of flour. Shut off the mixture and give the batter a few swift strokes with the spatula to finish mixing. Add the peaches and fold them in.
- Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan, smoothing it to the edges. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the batter, breaking up the clumps with your fingers.
- Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with some crumbs attached. You don't want the cake to be too dry. Cool on a wire rack for 30 minutes and then serve.
For ease of removing the cake from the pan, line the bottom of the pan with a parchment round.