It’s been a jam-packed summer at our house. We’ve been catching rays, catching waves and enjoying time with our family and friends. I’ve stayed up all hours of the night reading and promising myself that I’ll shut out the lights at the end of the next chapter. And then the next chapter, and then one more.
Isn’t that what holidays are all about?
The kids are sleeping in late every morning and I find myself in the kitchen, rolling pastries or kneading dough. It’s such a soothing way to start the day, and sometimes the only sound in the house is the noise of the rolling pin on the counter. I’m happiest when there’s a pie or two cooling on the stove. Even happier to give them to a friend who will enjoy them.
It’s definitely pie season in this house. What better way to showcase all of the fruit that summer has to offer than in a flaky pastry crust! For me, there isn’t a fruit out there that captures the sweet, essence of summer like a juicy, ripe peach. They’ve just come into season here and I couldn’t be happier. I’ve already made this pie many times for barbecues and lunches on the patio. Peaches are plentiful at market right now, and so sweet and delicate and juicy.
Don’t be daunted by pastry, like anything it just takes a little practice. My mother says she baked a pie every Saturday when she was newly married until she got it right. She definitely got it right. She can make a mean pie to this day and she was often in charge of pies in the bake shop because I knew they would be perfect every time. I have included her flaky pastry recipe for you to try.
I hope you’re having a wonderful summer!
Flawless Fresh Peach Pie
For the Pastry:
- 2 cups flour
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 cup Crisco Shortening
- 4-6 tbsp cold orange juice
- Stir the salt and flour in a medium bowl. Cut in the Crisco, with a pastry knife (pieces should be about the size of peas). Sprinkle on orange juice and stir with a fork just until it holds together. Divide the dough into two and press each half into a smooth disk. Cover with plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
For the Filling:
- 4 cups of peaches, peeled and sliced, approx. 6 medium peaches
- 3/4 cups white sugar
- 3 tbsp flour
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1/4 cup of sliced almonds for sprinkling on top crust (optional)
- 1 tbsp of heavy cream for top crust
- 1/2 tsp of sugar for sprinkling on top crust
Preheat oven to 450°
- Mix the sugar, cinnamon and flour for the filling in a small bowl and set aside. Roll out 1 pie crust disk on a lightly floured surface to a size approximately 12-inches round. Transfer it to 9-inch pie dish.
- Put two cups of the sliced peaches in the bottom of the pie shell. Sprinkle half of the sugar mixture on top. Put the last two cups of peaches on top of that and sprinkle with the remaining sugar mixture. Dot with butter.
- Roll out the second pastry disk to approximately 12- inch round. Because I didn’t do a picture tutorial for a lattice crust, you will find an excellent tutorial here. The pictures make the process very simple, if this is your first time. Once complete, trim the excess pastry to about 1/2 over hang. Fold the top and bottom crusts together and crimp the edges to seal. You can also do a simple pie crust on top by simply rolling out your second disk, to a 12-inch round and placing it on top of the peach filling. Simply put 4 steam slits, with a sharp knife, about 3/4 of an inch long near the centre of the pie.
- Lightly brush some heavy cream on top of the top crust and sprinkle with sugar and almond slices. Bake for 15 minutes at 450° then reduce heat to 350° and bake for 35 minutes longer until crust is golden and filling is bubbling. Best eaten slightly warm.
- I often bake my pies in a convection toaster oven. That way I don’t heat up the house in the summer.
- I’ve made this pie and frozen it before baking many times with excellent results. I just add an extra teaspoon of flour or tapioca sprinkled on the bottom crust before I put the filling in. Just add an extra 20 or 30 minutes of baking time. What a treat a summer peach is in the dead of winter!