Yes, I know it’s November and even the apples are over. Yes, I know we pretentious white folk like to eat seasonally and locally and organically and pedantically, and peach season ended in August. But maybe that’s all the more reason for you to go to the grocery store, buy a pound of peaches, and make this pie. Stick it to November, which has been kicking the asses of everyone I know. (Seriously, we started off with a motherfuck of a hurricane that submerged my fair city in three feet of water for a couple days, burned down Far Rockaway and redesigned the coastline of Staten Island, and far too many people close to me have loved ones with sudden and serious health crises. Fuck November.) Or maybe – and let’s not kid ourselves, this is more likely – I made this pie at the height of peach season and have been a wildly negligent blogger.
But let’s go with the “fuck November” theory. It’s so much nicer.
So! Peaches. Right around the time I hit puberty, my body decided that in addition to acquiring breasts, hips, and hair in unexpected places (oh god dangling modifiers, there is no way to fix this), I needed a raft of new allergies. Seemingly overnight I became allergic to cats, dogs, raw stone fruits, raw vegetables, and summer. Spring too. None of these allergies were serious, but all were annoying, and some – in particular, those to the peach family – were annoying enough that I decided eating those foods was not worth the suffering. That’s how I went ten years without eating a peach, plum, or nectarine. Every now and then I’d try a bite, and yup – still allergic.
Of course, that didn’t mean I didn’t miss them. I have previously spoken to you at length about how much I missed them. But soon after writing that post, a funny thing happened. I tried a bite of a peach … and nothing. No itchy throat. No itchy face. No regret. Of course, my immediate reaction was to eat about a pound and a half of peaches in a day because I could – so sue me, I’m basically twelve years old and have the attendant income stream so we’ll see how well that lawsuit goes for you – but more productively, I made this pie. Many notes lie ahead of you, but the bottom line is go. make this. now. I’ll wait.
Notes & Verdicts
peach pie by smitten kitchen
Notes: Deb suggests a pie crust recipe that I’m sure is quite excellent, but I hate making pie crust enough without subtracting a food processor from the equation. Simply Recipes‘ Perfect Pie Crust, which is entirely made in your food processor, has been my reliable go-to crust since last Thanksgiving, when I made pie crust for the first time. It’s delicious and allows for maximal laziness.
When I was preparing to make this pie I went through a whole thing about whether I should poach and peel the peaches or not. I asked friends, solicited opinions, and basically did everything but ask Prudence. Ultimately enough people said to do it that I did it, and I’m so glad I did. It’s a mindless task that is actually sort of satisfying, takes five minutes, and really allows the peaches to get almost custardy as they bake up rather than being constrained by their peel. Also, if your peaches are borderline ripe, the ease or difficulty with which your poached peach allows itself to be peeled is a great way to tell if it’s ripe. Unripe peaches, in my experience – including ones that aren’t going to ripen up because you bought bad peaches – don’t peel.
If I remember correctly, instead of brushing with milk or cream I did an egg wash on the lattice crust and then sprinkled my sugar.
Finally, making a lattice crust is NOT HARD. Deb drew this fantastically useful diagram of her technique, and seriously, it can also be done in less than five minutes. And it is more than worth it for the awe on people’s faces when you pull a golden, lattice-crusted pie from the oven.
Verdict: This is perfect and it also keeps pretty well. Make it and eat it. A