The time is now! Peaches are prolific at the local farmers markets and in grocery stores, too. It seems like if you blink you can miss this luscious, juicy season so run, don’t walk to the market and enjoy nature’s bounty. Remember to buy peaches to enjoy and about eight extra peaches for this once-a-year fresh peach pie treat.
I prefer freestone peaches, which are those with pits that separate easily from the fruit. Clingstone peaches hold on to their pits, making them more difficult to work with. Both can be equally tasty. Making pies is really very easy and there is no need to add extra time fighting the peach pits. Peaches remind me of friendships. Freestone friends are easy, fun to be around and most often very creative while clingstone friendships are harder to understand and take more work. All friendships are good for the soul, as are peaches but on a day-to-day basis, I choose freestone friendship and peaches.
I digress, back to the pie. Peaches taste wonderful on their own but I like to add cinnamon and nutmeg to the filling. Of course peach pie will not be complete unless it is served warm with a small scoop of vanilla ice cream. Here are a few tips for successful pie baking from the American Pie Council. Yes, that’s correct there is a pie council!
▪ Read the recipe in its entirety before beginning. Make sure you have all the ingredients and that you understand the recipe.
▪ Cold ingredients are essential to making a great pie crust. Be sure and chill the dough for at least an hour before rolling it out.
▪ Don’t overwork or over-handle the dough. Overworking the dough causes the dough to toughen.
▪ Bake the pie in the lower third of the oven, to ensure that the bottom crust is finished.
Fresh Peach Pie
Unbaked pie crust for a 2-crust (9-inch) pie
6 cups sliced fresh, peeled peaches, about 8 medium peaches
1 lemon, juiced
1/2 to 3/4 cup sugar, depending on sweetness of peaches
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3 tablespoons instant tapioca
2 tablespoons butter, cut into small pieces
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
Line a 9-inch pie plate with pie crust. Combine egg and water and blend well. Lightly brush the egg glaze over the bottom of the pie crust to moisture-proof the crust.
Toss the peaches with lemon juice, sugar (amount of sugar used depends of sweetness of peaches), cinnamon, nutmeg and tapioca. Spoon fruit into crust. Dot with butter. Place second crust on top of peaches. Fold crust under and pinch together to seal. Using a paring knife, cut slits in top crust to vent. Brush lightly with egg glaze and sprinkle lightly with additional sugar.
Place pie on cookie sheet to avoid boil over. Bake for 10 minutes and reduce heat to 350 degrees. Bake 45 to 55 minutes or until the pie crust is golden brown.
Cool completely on a wire rack before serving.
Roxanne Wyss is one of two cookbook authors and food consultants that make up The Electrified Cooks. Her most recent cookbook is “Delicious Dump Cakes.” Other recent books include “Slow Cooker Desserts, Oh So Easy, Oh So Delicious” and “The Newlywed Cookbook: Cooking Happily Ever After.” She develops the recipes for the “Eating for Life” column for The Kansas City Star and is a member of Les Dames d’Escoffier. She blogs at pluggedintocooking.com.