To bring cold eggs to room temperature quickly, set them in a bowl of warm water for a few minutes before you separate them.
For the baked peaches:
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup lightly packed dark brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 tablespoons amaretto (almond liqueur), or 1 teaspoon of pure almond extract
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 4 medium peaches, halved, pitted and thickly sliced (no need to peel)
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
For the meringue topping:
- 4 egg whites, at room temperature
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 cup sugar
- Finely grated zest of 1/2 lemon
- 9 to 10-inch oven-safe skillet or a similar size ceramic baking dish
1 Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Have on hand a 9- to 10-inch oven-safe skillet, or a similar-sized ceramic baking dish.
2 Make the brown butter: In the skillet over medium heat, melt the butter. Cook, stirring constantly, until the butter solids turn light brown and the butter smells nutty—about 2 to 3 minutes or so.
Immediately remove the pan from the heat. (If using a baking dish for this dessert, brown the butter in a small skillet and transfer it to the baking dish.)
- Read more about how to brown butter and watch a video HERE.
3 Prepare the peaches: Stir the brown sugar, vanilla, Amaretto, and salt into the brown butter. Add the peaches and toss to coat them with the sugar.
Spread them in the pan and sprinkle with the cinnamon.
4 Make the meringue: In the bowl of a stand mixer on low speed using the whisk attachment, beat the egg whites, salt, and cream of tartar until foamy.
Gradually increase the speed and slowly add the sugar, 1 to 2 tablespoons at a time, until the meringue is thick and glossy and holds firm peaks. (This takes about 3 to 4 minutes.) Fold in the lemon zest.
5 Bake the peaches: With a large spoon, spoon the meringue over the peaches and swirl it gently to give it pretty peaks.
Bake for 15 to 18 minutes, or until the meringue is golden brown. It should be firm on top, but still soft in the center.
6 Serve: Cool briefly before serving. This dessert is best eaten on the day you serve it, but leftovers will keep for a few days, refrigerated.