08 August 2010

Double Take: Fresh Peach Pie

Peaches! Peaches are loved here. Not quite as much as in nectarines or strawberries, but peaches are easy to come by when they are in season. They’ve been sweet and gorgeous this year. But when all the other blogs were posting about peach cobbler (with blueberries), Tabitha and I decided to make peach pie (without blueberries).

Just cut an X in the peach before you dip it in boiling water.

The most exciting thing about this recipe was not the recipe. Oh sure, it came with a pie crust recipe, but I’d recently stumbled across Smitten Kitchen’s pie crust 101 and 102, so you better believe I followed her advice instead of the advice from the all-new ultimate Southern Living Cookbook. To be honest, I’ve lost a bit of my initial excitement over this book. We’ve been making recipes for several months now and I have only found one that I know I will keep in my repertoire for many years to come (that would be in the Italian Breakfast Casserole, in case you’re wondering). I was hoping for a few more wows… though I may be learning the downside to using new cookbooks with over 1250 recipes… there can only so many recipes that are be fantastic, and if you don’t pick out the right ones, you could easily miss them.   

A dip in boiling water will remove the skins in no time! 

But back to peach pie… I’m fairly certain that’s why you’re here, not to read my rants on huge mediocre cookbooks. I bought two kilos of peaches and set to work. 

Discarded peach skins. 

First up, pie crust. I followed Smitten Kitchen's instructions on water, but otherwise followed the Southern Living recipe for a double crust 9-inch pie crust. Except I didn't. The SLC called for shortening, and well, I haven't bought shortening since before I moved to Germany. So I subbed butter. The recipe was similar to all the others I've seen, calling for flour, salt, chilled fat, and ice cold water. Cut butter fat into mixed flour and salt, add water, form into a disk, chill. I chilled mine for well over two hours and was rewarded with a flaky crust that rolled out beautifully. 

Peeled, slippery peaches! Gotta keep these little guys contained!

Next up, filling. One of the things I found so appealing about this recipe was it's simplicity. Only six ingredients in the filling: peaches, sugar, flour, cinnamon, butter, and vanilla extract. Of course, I read the recipe multiple times, but had it in my head the recipe did not call for peeling the peaches. I decided that was unacceptable and I would break rules and peel the peaches. I've peeled peaches many times using the blanching method, so I set out to do that again. Once the peaches were peeled, I read the recipe again and noticed that it DID say "peeled, sliced fresh peaches." Hrm, I seem to be having problems with comprehension these days. And to think I always scored off the charts in Reading Comprehension on the Iowa Test of Basic Skills. Oh well. 

Peeled, sliced fresh peaches.

Once the peaches were peeled and sliced, I added the sugar, flour, and cinnamon (I know, I can't believe I added cinnamon to a sweet dish... I generally only like it in savory dishes). The recipe then instructed me to let these ingredients sit together until a syrup formed. Well, my syrup formed pretty much instantaneously, so I proceeded. I cooked the peaches until tender, added my butter and vanilla, and then wet back to work on my pie crust. 

This picture was taken once they were on the heat, but you can see how much juice there was even here.

And, of course, back to Smitten Kitchen. This time to Pie Crust 103: Rolling and Crimping. I used tons of flour to roll out my dough and was rewarded with a non-sticky crust and easy counter cleanup. Woot! I lined my pan, added my filling (I'm thinking the bottom crust would be tons flakier if the filling were chilled before adding it to the crust), rolled out the other half of my crust, topped it, and popped it in a hot oven. 
I was feeling lazy at the time and did not properly weave my top crust. Ms. Humble from Not So Humble Pie has since directed me (and all of her other readers) to a great tutorial on Simply Recipes. I was still pretty pleased with my pie crust (which was a first for me), and I perfected pie crust on my next try the following week.*

Beautifully baked pie :)

While tasty, this peach pied ended up like a peach cobbler in a pie crust. In other words, very liquidy. The flavor was great, but it did not look like a pie when cut. I think it was a combination of fabulously ripe and juice peaches and blanching. In the future I'll either take the long way to peel peaches (with a knife) or just make cobbler. Cuz boy, we like peach cobbler. 

Make-again-please: 5 votes!
Tasty-but-more-like-cobbler-than-pie: 1 vote

See all that juice! I just realized that I didn't get a plated shot. But you can imagine it!

For Tabitha's take on Fresh Peach Pie, head on over to Double the Garlic.


  1. Yummy! How about some vanilla ice cream with that?

  2. I like your lattice! Sorry your insides were so gooey! I'm glad it tasted good anyway.


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