Peach Rosemary Brown Butter Tarts #BakeTogether

My husband is out of town this week and while he is having fun in the sun, I'm holding down the fort here at home.  It has been a good week with some bumps, bruises and laughter, but I've also had two events in the evening that required some baking.  Good thing for me, baking is my therapy.  I may not be able to control my boys' behavior, but I can control the amount of ingredients and turn them into something scrumptious, delicious and loved by all.

This month I also decided to jump in on #baketogether.  Abby Dodge (who is an amazing baker in my opinion) posts a recipe at the beginning of the month and encourages other bakers to push their creativity and then link up their recipes.                                            

This month is all about brown butter apple tarts in honor of her latest book Mini Treats & Handheld Sweets ~100 Delicious Desserts to Pick Up and Eat!  When I found out about her new book, I placed a hold on it at our local library and was fortunate to be one of the first people to check out this book.  I so want this book......

I chose to make the Peach Rosemary Brown Butter Tarts for our bible study on Friday evening.  I did read through the recipe at least twice so I knew how much time I would need to make these.  Unfortunately, a certain 4 year old messed up my time line, but I've also learned to be flexible instead of stressing out.  Though, I'm still working on not stressing....

I had asked one of my friends earlier in the week if I could snag a few sprigs of fresh rosemary from her husbands herb garden. She graciously brought me a gallon size bag of rosemary and a few extra guests too.

After going to two different grocery stores and discovering that peach preserves seem to be a thing of the past, I had to great creative.  I went to the frozen section, picked up a bag of frozen peach slices and made my own peach filling.  I then took out a portion of the filling and added fresh chopped rosemary.

This is where the flexiblity comes in.  Once the tarts were made and ready for the oven, it was time for me to leave.  Earlier in the day I had asked grandma to watch the boys for the evening because we all needed a little time apart after being together nonstop since dad left.  Minus of course school and church activities.  I dropped the boys off for a fun evening with their grandparents and I headed off to my friends house for our biweekly bible study.

Our bible study group gets together twice a month to enjoy a meal and then do a study together.  While we were having dinner the tarts were baking in the oven.  I brought a box of Trader Joe's cookies for the kids because I didn't have enough time to make a batch of homemade cookies for them.  It was a small group of both adults and children, and the kids didn't seem to mind not getting any tarts.

I have to thank my friend Dana for taking a few pictures of the tarts.  My camera is in Hawaii and while my new iPhone takes pretty decent pictures, she offered to take pictures with her nice Canon.  These tarts are so yummy and I'm glad I added the Chinese Five Spice to them.

Brown Butter – Apple Hand Tarts
Makes 18 hand tarts
For the brown butter dough
16 tablespoons (8 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup (7 ounces) firmly packed light brown sugar
1/8 tsp Chinese five spice
1/2 teaspoon table salt
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 cups (13 1/2 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
For the peach rosemary filling
1 bag of frozen peach slices
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
agave syrup to taste 
For assembly
1 large egg, at room temperature
1 tablespoon water
Turbanado or demerara or sanding sugar
Make the brown butter dough
1. Put the butter in a large saucepan. Cook, stirring, over medium heat until nutty brown and the milk solids are dark brown, 6 to 7 minutes. Slide the pan from the heat and add the brown sugar, Chinese five spice and salt. Stir until the sugar is almost dissolved, then set aside for 5 minutes to cool slightly. Using your fingertip, check the temperature of the batter—it should be warm but not hot. If it’s hot, set the pan aside for a few more minutes before continuing with the recipe.
2. Add the eggs and vanilla and stir until well blended. Add the flour and stir until a smooth, soft dough forms.
3. Arrange two pieces of plastic wrap on the counter and scrape the dough onto the center of one. Divide the dough in half (about 14 3/4 ounces each) and put half on the second piece of plastic wrap. Using the plastic as a guide, shape both into 5-inch squares.Wrap in the plastic and set aside at room temperature until firm enough to roll, about 3 hours. (You can pop the dough into the refrigerator for a hour or so, but you don’t want the dough to be too chilled. It would be impossible to roll.)
Make the filling
Puree frozen peach slices in a blender.  Add agave syrup to taste for sweetness.  I made mine a little sweeter since I was adding the rosemary.  Take out 10 tablespoons of filling and transfer to a bowl.  Add chopped rosemary to the small bowl of peach puree and mix together. 
Assemble and bake
1. Line two cookie sheets with parchment or nonstick liners. Put the egg and water in a small bowl and, using a fork, mix until well blended.
2. Working with one piece of dough at a time on a lightly floured piece of parchment (this dough is soft, so the parchment is a must for successful rolling), roll out to a rectangle slightly larger than 9×15 inches. Using a sharp paring knife or a fluted roller and a ruler, trim the edges to get a neat 9×15-inch rectangle, then cut into 3 x 2 1/2-inch rectangles (for a total of 18 rectangles).  Arrange the pastry rectangles about 2 inches apart on the prepared cookie sheets and cover with plastic. Roll out and cut the second piece of dough as you did the first one.
3. Uncover the dough on one of the cookie sheets. Spoon a scant 1 tablespoon of the peach filling onto the center of each rectangle and spread down the center, leaving a 1/2-inch border at the edges. Using a small pastry brush, brush the edges of each rectangle with egg wash. Lay the remaining rectangles over the filling. Using the tines of a fork, press (or crimp) the pastry edges to seal. Lightly brush the top of each hand tart with egg wash. Using the tip of a small, sharp knife, cut 2 small slits in the top of each hand tart to let steam escape. Sprinkle the tops with some of the turbanado sugar and slide the cookie sheets into the fridge while the oven heats up.
4. Position an oven rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 375°F.
5. Bake, one sheet at a time, until the tarts are dark brown on the edges, 20 to 23 minutes. Move the sheet to a wire rack and let cool for 10 minutes. Carefully remove the tarts from the sheet and set them on a wire rack and let cool until warm or cool completely. The tarts are best when served at room temperature or slightly warmed.

slightly adapted from Abby Dodge


  1. Beautiful, I love the peach and rosemary combination.

  2. Oh, these were so delightful. Amazing flavor, very unique.

  3. Yum! Rosemary is one of my favorites. What a beautiful batch of tarts. xo ~nancy
    p.s. I can't always control my boys' behavior either :/ Keep the faith!

  4. I can totally envision the addition of the 5-chinese spice - good choice! You have some very lucky friends.