Summary: I have, over the years, worked on what is, in my opinion, the best representation of a number of pies: blackberry, apple, coconut, pecan. This summer, I set my sights on their peach cousin, and I think I'm nearly there.
Yield: one 8” pie (if you wish to make a 9” pie, simply up the filling ingredients a bit)
For the crust:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (I like King Arthur or 365 organic; both are unbleached)
- 1½ teaspoons fine sea salt
- ½ cup canola or vegetable oil
- ¼ cup milk (1% or great in fat content)
For the filling:
- 6-8 peaches, depending on size; you want 5-5½ cups of sliced peaches, peeled and pitted
- ¾ cup + 2 tablespoons unrefined, granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons muscovado sugar (or use another 2 tablespoons regular sugar)
- 1½ tablespoons arrowroot
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¾ teaspoon ground ginger
- pinch of salt
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1-2 apricots (optional, but I love the addition!), pitted and sliced, no need to peel
- 1 tablespoon butter, cut into 4 pieces (optional)
- egg or milk for wash (optional)
- 2 teaspoons turbinado or demerara sugar (optional)
Preheat your oven to 425° F.
Make the crust:
Into a medium mixing bowl, sift together the flour and salt. In a 1-cup measure or a small bowl, whisk together the oil and milk and then pour the liquid over the flour mixture. Using a dinner fork, combine the wet and dry until everything is just incorporated. Do not overmix and do not add any additional liquid.
Between two sheets of waxed or parchment paper, roll out about 60% of the crust dough into a round. Remove the top sheet of paper and quickly, confidently, invert the pie crust into a pie plate. Carefully press it in and remove the remaining sheet of paper. Set aside.
Make the filling:
In a large mixing bowl toss together the sliced peaches, sugars, arrowroot, flour, cinnamon, ginger, salt, and lemon juice.
Spoon/pour into your prepared pie plate. If you’re using the apricot, arrange the slices over the top of the peaches so that you have an even distribution. If using the butter, dot the pieces over the top of the fruit filling.
Between your two sheets of waxed or parchment paper, roll out the remaining pie crust dough into another round. Remove one sheet of paper and, as you did earlier, invert the crust over the filled pie, crimping the edges in any way you like.
Cut a few steam slits in the top crust. If you want to brush the top with an egg- or milk-wash and then sprinkle with turbinado or demerara sugar, go for it.
Place the pie on a baking sheet and slide into your heated oven. Cook for 15 minutes and then reduce the oven temperature to 375°. Cook pie another 30-35 minutes until the crust is pale golden and the filling is bubbling.
Cool and serve or refrigerate. I like this pie chilled!