Wednesday, July 27, 2011
Peach Lattice Pie
Posted by: Maggie
The first real pie I ever made was when I was 6. By real, I mean one with a crust and fruit, not something like this. I was in Mrs. Barone's 1st grade class at Holy Trinity School in Long Branch, NJ. I'm sure there was an educational reason why Mrs. Barone had 20 six-year olds baking in the rectory on a school day, perhaps as part of a math lesson, or as a reward for good behavior. All I know is that we made apple pie, and it took me 21 years to ever make another pie.
This is me on the first day of first grade. Little did I know at the time, that 21 years later all I'd remember doing in first grade was making pie. Actually, that isn't my only memory. I remember crying when the cafeteria tried to feed me an eggplant parmesan sandwich. Adult Maggie thinks that sounds delicious. So, both of my first grade memories are food related. Shocker.
Until yesterday, I found pie crust kind of intimidating. Now that I've made one, I have no idea why I was so intimidated all this time. While the process was certainly time consuming, it was really simple. Now all I want to do is use my newfound culinary confidence and make an apple pie, a cherry pie, a blueberry pie, a strawberry pie, and umm...what other fruits can I stuff in a pie?
Please make this pie while peaches are still deliciously ripe, juicy, and in season. It's so packed full of peaches it's practically a health food. They cancel out the butter and shortening in the crust, promise. Speaking of shortening, I know a lot of people like to avoid it, but I think it's why this crust is so delicious and flaky. Use it. It won't kill you. Actually, it might, but only if you eat it every day by the truckload.
Here's what you'll need:
For the piecrust:
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
7 tablespoons vegetable shortening
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cut into 1/4 inch pieces and frozen for 30 minutes
10-12 tablespoons ice water
For the filling:
6-7 medium peaches, ripe (about 6 cups total)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 cup granulated sugar
3-4 tablespoons potato starch (I found this in the kosher section at my grocery store, and the original recipe states that you can substitute pulverized Minute tapioca)
In a large bowl, stir flour, sugar, and salt together. Using a pastry blender, cut in the shortening until the mixture resembles coarse sand. Sprinkle the frozen butter on the flour mixture. Use the pastry cutter to cut the butter in, until there are no pieces larger than a pea remaining, and the mixture is light yellow.
Sprinkle 5 tablespoons of ice water over the flour mixture. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold in the water. Sprinkle 5 more tablespoons over and repeat. Continue adding water until a small portion of dough holds together when squeezed. You can add up to 2 additional tablespoons of water.
Remove the dough from the bowl, and form into a cohesive ball. Divide the ball into two sections, one slightly larger than the other. Form the large section into a 5-inch rectangle, and the small section into a 4-inch disc. Refrigerate for one hour, or up to two days before rolling.
After dough has chilled (if chilled for longer than an hour let stand at room temperature until malleable) roll the larger piece of dough into an 11x15 inch rectangle. Carefully transfer the rectangle to a parchment lined baking sheet. Using a pizza or pastry wheel, trim edges, and cut out 8 strips of dough, measuring 1 1/4 inches wide by 15 inches long. Freeze strips on the cookie sheet for 30 minutes.
Roll the smaller piece of dough out into a 12-inch circle. Carefully place into the pie pan, and press into corners. Leave the dough that overhangs the lip in place, and place crust in refrigerator.
In a large pot, put 3 quarts of water on to boil. Fill a bowl will cold water, and 3 trays of ice cubes. Adjust the oven rack to the lower-middle position, and preheat oven to 425 degrees. Wash and dry the peaches, and using a paring knife, score an x into the base of each peach. When water is boiling, add the peaches to the water, cover, and blanch for 2 - 2 1/2 minutes (larger peaches will need 2 1/2.) Using a slotted spoon, remove peaches and immediately place in ice bath for 1 minute. Remove from water, and peel. The skins should slip right off if you start from the x you made at the base.
Pit and slice the peaches into 3/8 inch slices. Toss in a large bowl with 1 cup sugar, lemon juice, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and potato starch. Transfer to the dough lined pie plate.
Remove the dough strips from the freezer. If they're too frozen to be workable wait 5-10 minutes. Weave a lattice top, trim off the excess lattice, fold the rim of the shell up over the ends of the lattice strips and crimp. Lightly brush the lattice top and crust with 1 tablespoon water, and sprinkle with sugar. Place pie on a baking sheet, and bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes. Lower oven temperature to 375 degrees, rotate pie, and continue baking for 25-30 minutes more. If the crust is getting too dark while baking, cover edges with foil.
Cool cooked pie on a wire rack for 2 hours before serving.
Source: Cooks Illustrated