Thursday, June 24, 2010

Sweet as a Georgia Peach Pie

[172/365] fresh, local peaches.

I think about food a lot. Sometimes I even dream about food. I dream about cakes and tarts, all sorts of fresh fruit and lately, I’ve been dreaming about peaches. Which is excellent timing, since they are in season in my corner of the world, one of the perks of living in the south.

When I dream about peaches, they always taste like summer. Smell like it too. The kind of peaches you can’t find in the grocery store. The kind of peaches that are straight off the tree. I’m lucky enough to live close to a fantastic orchard, where they grow these kind of peaches, along with lots of other scrumptious fruit. You walk into the back room of the orchard store, past all the little knicknacks for the tourist, t-shirts with my towns name emblazoned on the front, to the fruit room. This room always smells seasonal - a foodies dream. In the fall its apples, and in the summer it’s peaches. It’s intoxicating, that smell of the season.

peach pie

I carefully picked out my bag of fruit, sniffing and squeezing them, along with several other borderline inappropriate actions. I couldn’t help myself, I was picking the peaches of my dreams.

I got them home and could only think about one thing, peach pie. It’s risky anytime I decide to make pie - I’ve always considered myself a pretty lousy pie maker. I tried to talk myself out of it, considering peach muffins or maybe cupcakes. But by golly, all I wanted was delicious, gooey pie. I wanted the peaches to be center stage.

With that determination, I started the crust. The scary, terrifying crust. While peaches occupy my dreams, pie crust gives me nightmares. It just seems so fussy, so difficult. But you know what? It was as easy as pie, as they say. I used Martha Stewart’s Pate Brisee recipe, and simply added all the ingredients to the food processor. Done! As for the filling, I wanted those peaches to shine. I couldn’t find a recipe basic enough, so I made up my own.

a mess of peach pie.

When I pulled it out of the oven, I was a little disappointed. It was homely. Ugly, even. It certainly didn’t look like the pie of my dreams. When I tried to cut it for pictures, it only got worse. I couldn’t get a clean slice to save my life. I walked away for a few minutes, then I realized I hadn’t even tasted it yet.

When I did, my disappointment vanished. I had made a totally successful pie! The best one I had ever made. My crust was perfectly flakey and tender, and the peaches were sweet and lovely. So I shot a few pictures of the mess then took it to the kitchen, where my family stood around it, eating it straight from the pie plate, enjoying all the summer fruit had to offer.



messy peach pie

Sweet as a Georgia Peach Pie

Pie Crust:
From Martha Stewart

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
1/4 to 1/2 cup ice water

In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour, salt, and sugar. Add butter, and process until the mixture resembles coarse meal, 8 to 10 seconds.

With machine running, add ice water in a slow, steady stream through feed tube. Pulse until dough holds together without being wet or sticky; be careful not to process more than 30 seconds. To test, squeeze a small amount together: If it is crumbly, add more ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time.

Divide dough into two equal balls. Flatten each ball into a disc and wrap in plastic. Transfer to the refrigerator and chill at least 1 hour. Dough may be stored, frozen, up to 1 month.

Filling:
5 pounds fresh peaches, sliced
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
juice of 1/2 lemon

1 egg, beaten

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On a lightly floured surface, roll one disc of dough into a 12-inch round, 1/8-inch thick. Fit into a 9-inch pie plate. Set aside in the refrigerator.

In a large bowl, combine peaches, sugar, flour, and lemon juice, toss to combine. Pour into pie plate, mounding in the center. Roll second disc of dough into a 12-inch round, 1/8 inch thick. Wet edges of the crust in the plate, then lay dough on top, pressing at edges to seal. Cut vents into top crust. Place in refrigerator for 30 minutes.


Remove pie from refrigerator. Brush crust with egg wash, then sprinkle with sugar. Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake at 400 for 20 minutes, until crust is browned at edges. Turn oven down to 350, bake for another 40-50 minutes.

Enjoy!

67 comments:

  1. Mmm, I love peaches. And, didn't you know that the messiest foods are always the ones that taste the best?

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  2. I think about food a lot - and dream about it, too! The peach pie just looks lovely, not ugly at all! :) It's rustic, homemade goodness. I'd love to have a slice right now.

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  3. Personally, I love how the crust slumps over the bright filling. It looks homey, comforting, and totally uncontrived!

    I'm dreaming of in-season Virginia peaches right now, and while I'd been planning to use them in a batch of ice cream, you're tempting me to bake them into a pie. :)

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  4. My husband's sister used to live in Georgia (for over 20 years) and I miss a lot of the goodness especially a Georgia peach. She shared her recipe for deep dish peach pie which I still haven't made. Maybe this year... Lovely recipe and pictures, Hannah!

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  5. WOW that pie looks amazing - now that peaches are in season and so delish, it might be time to make a pie. Great looking photos!

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  6. That pie looks great! Sometimes the rustic, "not perfect for pictures" food is the best :) And, you still made it look absolutely beautiful!

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  7. You are too hard on yourself - it looks delicious and beautiful! I had a fantastic slice of peach cobbler today that someone else made, but this looks 10x better.

    The yum factor is a 10 (out of a possible 10).

    Thanks for sharing!!

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  8. Hannah, I don't think ANYONE has ever made a peach pie that was pretty and still tasted good, because great peaches are just too juicy. You got it right! And your pie is not homely... it's "homey." Well done! Pie crust is my nemesis, too. That's why I'll be making peach cobbler this summer. ;)

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  9. oh hannah, i'm so glad you shared this with us. sometimes it doesn't matter what a dish looks like -- as long as it's delicious and comforting and familiar. i love that this pie is all about your home, your summer, and your love for baking. and with your crazy talent for capturing gorgeous light, i think this pie looks beautiful just as it is.

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  10. This pie is beautiful!!!! I absolutely love love all of your photos and recipes. Sending you hugs!!

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  11. A fabulous pie! Totally irresistible just like the pictures!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  12. Hannah, its looks very tasty.Taste is all that really matters, isn't it? beauty is in its imperfection,homeliness and love that put in baking it!!

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  13. Not to worry - homely is beautiful!

    In August I could pretty much subsist on peaches. I can get through 10 a day!

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  14. that looks absolutely heavenly! as always such beautiful capturing. i just love rustic desserts. that would be perfect for the fourth! have a great weekend hannah!

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  15. Pretty pie! I love peach pie recipes without spices - they let the peach shine through. Instant tapioca pearls as a thickener instead of flour also let the peach taste shine. I wish I could get some fresh peaches right now, but alas, a few more weeks of waiting!

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  16. This is the time to be dreaming about peach pies, all right! :) They are lovely right now! I never have trouble making the crust, but rolling it out has always been a problem for me. You did a wonderful job! The peach pie looks divine.

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  17. Ahhhh! Pies freak me out too! Pastry cutter vs. food processor? Is my butter cold enough? Will the filling be 'filling' or soupy? Do I egg wash the top or leave it alone? So many fears, and not enough time! Ha! Well, so proud of you and your pie endeavor. Taste conquers looks in my opinion too!

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  18. I was driving through Georgia last week and I knew I had to pull over for some roadside peaches. I wish I had enough left for this pie!

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  19. yum!!! and alabama peaches are that yummy too. :)

    i have to go early and buy fried pies from the market tomorrow.

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  20. It looks fantastic!

    I am on a peach kick too! Got some yesterday at the Farmer's market and was up to my elbows in juice peeling and cutting them.
    I made a oatmeal cookie peach cobbler...my oh my. nothing finer than peaches in the summer! (especially here in the south right?!)

    -elizabeth

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  21. It looks like the pies I dream about :))

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  22. Baking pie has always been a daunting task for me as well. I made my first blueberry pie a couple years ago and after some success decided it was silly to "fear" it. Good for you for taking a step back and enjoying your pie, flaws and all. It looks delicious. Peach pie is next on my list!

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  23. Congrats on your delicious pie. A flaky crust and delicious fruit is a success, indeed. I used Martha's Pate Brisee for a peach and blackberry galette recently and I loved it, too.

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  24. It looks so great! I use that Pate Brisee recipe all the time for pies, love it! Can't wait for peaches to be in season over in my neck of the woods!

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  25. Peaches are my favorite fruit and the smell is so heavenly. Our peaches on our tree aren't ripe yet but, now I can't wait!

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  26. I swear its always the ugliest things that taste best!! I'm really bad at pie's and always seem to have trouble with the crust. I might need to attempt one again now.

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  27. I love Martha's pate brisee recipe! It's been my go-to pie crust recipe for ages. For the record, I'm am known as the "pie-maker" in my family. I've been baking yummy pies for years, and I don't think a one of them has made a clean pretty slice! You got the part that really matters right :)

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  28. I think "rustic" is a good adjective for your pie! Looks beautiful. A couple tips from my own experience... Martha's pate brisee is a great recipe, The Baker's Dozen cookbook also has a great all-butter pie crust recipe. But I find that I get a better texture if I do it by hand with a pastry cutter and fork rather than with a food processor (I always go overboard with the processor). Also, for getting a clean slice, did you try letting it cool to room temperature completely, or maybe even sticking it in the fridge to firm up? I almost never have the patience to wait that long (due to the yummy smell), but my fruit pies always firm up eventually as they continue to cool.

    No peaches yet where I am, waiting anxiously for them though!

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  29. Beautiful shots. I happen to love the messy, real-life look to food. Yours make me crave the peach pie like no other.

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  30. It looks really good indeed. Peaches tend to give a little water when they are baked, but they do taste gooood!

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  31. That is a beautiful peach pie!! Any which way you look at it...just gorgeous.

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  32. I think your peach pie looks fantastic!! I love baking pies! (well, the name of my blog is "what about pie?) Pies are pretty forgiving because of the filling. Usually it's fruit or maybe it's chocolate pudding...either way, it's gotta taste great!

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  33. It's not homely it's beautiful. Perfect and rustic for summer!

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  34. you have the most fabulous header ever. and that peach pie.

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  35. Dang, I would've helped take care of that 'mess' in a heartbeat.

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  36. I don't think it's "homely." I think it's beautiful.

    The mess always happens to me, too, when I decide to cut into the pie without waiting for it to cool. But hey, it's worth it isn't it? I'm gonna try your recipe when I get my hands on some peaches.

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  37. The ugliest pies are the best tasting ones. I promise. After years of making pies with my mom, the homeliest ones are the ones I remember. Oh, but peach pie - now I have to make it. That does just scream summer.

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  38. The peach pie looks delicious. I would love a slice with some vanilla ice cream, please.

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  39. Oh my, I will just have to try this recipe! I love the simple and straightforward ingredients.

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  40. I dream about food too. Every night! How funny. I think your pie is gorgeous. Not homely at all. Lovely job!

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  41. it's always better to taste good than to look good!

    now I'm itching to make a peach pie!

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  42. I agree better to taste good! Should always cut 2 slices before you take the first one out.

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  43. I can almost smell the hand picked peaches that went into baking this mouthwatering pie. Really, it's quite beautiful!

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  44. Yum! You've just made me lust after your peaches! ;)

    Really Hannah, it's a lovely rustic pie. Wonderful post - thanks for sharing!

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  45. Honestly, I don't even think I've had let alone made a peach pie. My peach lovin' daughter would probably be all over this. As always your photos are gorgeous!
    ~ingrid

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  46. I am a Georgia peach; therefore, I heart this pie. :) xoxo, natty

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  47. Peaches are my favorite summer fruit by far! And sometimes the things that look most unappealing to us are actually the most delicious :) I'll have to make time to head over to a local peach orchard soon to make this pie properly!

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  48. i love peach pie! and that pie is not ugly :)

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  49. i love peach pie.....i made a peach and blackberry cobbler for the 4th. that pie looks delish!!!

    cindy

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  50. I think your pie looks lovely. I love peaches this time of year. They occupy my thoughts quite a bit.

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  51. Hannah, it's nice to know you're not perfect. :) And personally, I find the imperfection of the pie to be even better. Knowing that you and your family all gathered around with forks in hand, makes this special.

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  52. Oh my, this pie looks beyond perfect! Imperfect homely pies are the best in my opinion.
    That crust....and such lovely colours!

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  53. made it, it rocked! and mine held up well i just let it really cool off for a long time. perhaps that helped the juices congeal a bit... either way it was fabulous! thanks hannah.

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  54. Sorry for the late comment. Just getting ready for Thanksgiving so I linked over. Your pie and pictures both look fantastic!

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  55. T he list of ingredients is quite short but is really worth a try for parents whose kids always cry for a pie. The result is a crispy all-natural pie that is healthy and is really easy to make.

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  57. Beautiful looking pie. Peach pies are wonderful.

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