Ice Cream Is The Perfectly Cool Contrast To Grilled Peaches

Peaches and cream have been a classic flavor combination over the years and have even inspired many food items from yogurts to breakfast cereals. Desserts take this pair to a whole new level with peach cheesecakes and even cream cheese danishes with peaches. Of course, it's hard to imagine a dessert starring peaches and cream without jumping to peach pie. Plus, pairing cool ice cream with warm peaches creates the perfect contrast.

While the classic apple pie predates peach pie by a couple of hundred years, they were both viewed as traditional southern desserts in America by the mid-19th century and quickly got popularized with vanilla ice cream as well. However, this isn't the only way to enjoy that dichotomy of flavors and temperatures. Since peak peach season is typically the end of summer and early fall months, it's the perfect opportunity to throw this sweet fruit into the mix during your backyard barbeque.

It may sound weird to cut peaches in half and put them on the grill next to your meat or other side dishes, but it actually makes the most delicious dessert when paired with vanilla ice cream. Plus, it's healthier than peach pie à la mode since grilled peaches don't have any crust or dough. However, there are plenty of ways to serve your grilled peaches that make them feel just as decadent.

Warm grilled peaches can be served in many ways

For starters, once you remove the pit from your stone fruit, you can toss your peach halves, skin intact, in a sweet mixture of lemon, honey, and cinnamon before or after grilling. This doesn't just enhance the fruit's natural sugars but it adds some brightness as well as warm, woody spice notes. When these flavors are paired with rich and creamy vanilla ice cream, it's truly a match made in heaven.

This perfectly light dessert is often reminiscent of the transition between summer and fall because of the peaches' seasonality and flavor profile. As the peach halves heat up over the open flame, they not only get grill marks but the juices in the fruit are released, enhancing their sweetness and giving them a smokey, caramelized flavor. Topping your grilled peaches and ice cream with a nice drizzle of caramel or toasted nuts would be a delicious autumn-inspired addition.

When it comes to grilling any stone fruit, there are some important factors to consider. While ripe fruit is typically sweet and ready to eat, if it's too soft it won't be able to withstand the heat of your grill. Therefore, look for peaches that are slightly firm to the touch. You also want to ensure that your grill is well-oiled so the fruit doesn't stick, and heated high to over 450 F. After a few minutes of grilling on each side, you'll want to serve your peaches with ice cream immediately so that temperature contrast is fully embraced.