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Tuesday, March 20, 2018

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Tarting up summerfruit on the barbecue

Dazz Switalla
Flavour Secrets
No.1 The Strand Chef

Rustic peach and baked semolina flan

The summer sun brings out the colour and flavour of our favourite summer stone fruits –and often chargrilling brings it out even more taste.

A few seasons ago I discovered roasting peaches slowly in the oven with spices and sugar makes an awesome chutney.

Now with barbecue season upon us, and increasing amounts of stone fruit available, keeping part of the barbecue grill free for grilling your peach or nectarine slices is a good idea.

Just the grilled fruit alone with some mascarpone or ice cream is nice but I thought charred peaches would be great embedded into a semolina custard-filled
filo pie.

Semolina custard has a wonderfully different texture and when baked with thin flaky filo pastry it takes on a very more-ish summery feel.

Part of the reason is it’s loosely based on the Greek custard pie – something I used to devour readily during the warm evenings over there.

It’s easy to utilise a medium-size, heavy frying pan to bake your flan in, which all adds to the rustic appeal. And much like any typical barbecue food, keeping it simple is the key.


 8 peaches
 10-12 sheet filo pastry sheets
 30g melted butter
 1 cup fine semolina
 2.5 cups milk
 2 egg yolks
 ¾ cup sugar
 A few drops real vanilla extract


Cut the peaches from the stone into large chunks. On a clean chargrill with a little oil, turn and char fruit on all sides for a few minutes then set aside.

Warm the milk, sugar and vanilla extract, stir in the semolina and reduce heat, stirring until mixture thickens.

Remove from heat and beat in egg yolks, then set to one side.

Line the pan with a few sheets of filo then butter the odd sheet as you as you lay sheet upon sheet around the pan.

Before the last sheets are used spread some of the semolina onto the base, then top with rest of pastry.

Now spread the rest of the semolina custard over the pastry and squish the charred peaches in before the custard sets.

Bake the whole tart in the oven at 180 degrees Celsius for 20 minutes.

Serve hot or cold with whipped cream or yoghurt. It’s a great choice for one of our long summer evenings.


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Rotorua lake, Mokoia island and a manned canoe.  Photo: Thirza Fleeson.

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