Peach Pie, Getting It Just Right
Peach pie is one of those things that, done right, is quite likely the best pie you can make. Done badly, it can be pretty awful. How do you make it the right way? Surprisingly, it’s actually pretty easy, but does require a little care in getting everything ready.
So to start out, you need a couple of pie crusts. I use the special Perfect Pie Crust I’ve used for many years. If you have another recipe or even want to use a prepared crust, go for it. You can also make a lattice crust if you like. The secret is how to deal with peaches, which can be way too juicy or, on occasion, too dry. To handle that, after the peaches are peeled, put them in a pan with brown and white sugars and let them sit for at least an hour. If you then lift out the peaches and take that wonderful peachy juice that’s left behind, add it to some starch (I use tapioca, you can use cornstarch or what ever else works), cinnamon, nutmeg and some salt. Heat it until everything is dissolved and it starts getting nice and thick, and add it back to the peaches. Add a little butter and you’re done.
You can then bake the pie and that’s all there is too it. And with a bit of luck, you’ve got a pie that’s moist and flavorful.
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 4-1/2 cups sliced peeled peaches
- Pastry for double-crust pie (See perfect pie crust)
- 3 Tbsp. cornstarch
- 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp. salt
- 2 tsp. lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp. butter
- In a large bowl, combine sugars; add peaches and toss gently. Cover and let stand for 1 hour. Line a pie plate with bottom pastry; trim even with edge. Set aside. Drain peaches, reserving juice.
- In a small saucepan, combine the cornstarch, nutmeg, cinnamon and salt; gradually stir in reserved juice. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Stir in lemon juice and butter. Gently fold in peaches. Pour into crust.
- Roll out remaining pastry; make a lattice or top crust. Trim, seal and flute edges. Cover edges loosely with foil.
- Bake at 400 for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 and cook 30-45 minutes or until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbly.
- Allow to sit on a rack until cool.