One of my father´s more winning characteristics is that, working as he does in the food business, he often turns up with boxes of good stuff under his arm. And since these things are presents from the people who make them, they usually come in industrial sizes. My mother takes exception to them, saying they clutter the pantry, so I´m always kindly ready to lighten the load when I find a box of 24 jars of anchovies from Santoña, or several kilos of the best tiny brown lentils, or a huge can of duck confit.
This morning, rummaging around in the clutter of odds and ends in the terrace shelves I found two kilo tins of Almendrina. This is a sweet almond paste with a gorgeous old-style design, and I´d always been curious but never to the extent of taking one of those massive tins home.
Having one already there, though, I had to open it and start playing around. Apparently you can use it to make an almond drink, and as a sweetener in all sorts of things (try it instead of sugar with rice pudding) but here´s what I did:
Almond and peach tart for very lazy people with a couple of good tins to hand
This is a killer pudding, sweet and rich but not cloying. The almond paste isn´t too almondy, but provides a creamy undertone, almost like creme patissiere. I´ll try it with fresh stone fruit when it´s in season.
Ready made puff pastry
Peaches in syrup
Preheat the oven to 200ºC
Roll out the pastry. Smear some of the almond paste until just shy of the edges. Place the sliced peaches prettily or as you will. Pinch the edges of the pastry so that they´ll hold the juices when they start to run. Scatter slivered almonds on top, and bake until golden.