Saturday, August 13, 2011

Charmed Georgia Peach Pie

I have eleven posts to introduce you to Ella Mae LeFaye and the characters of Pies and Prejudice, so I thought I'd make a pie representing the book's setting. Ella Mae has just fled Manhattan (not because NYC was bad, but because her two-timing husband was bad) and has returned home to Havenwood, Georgia.

Havenwood is a beautiful and rather isolated town in the northeast corner of the state. It boasts a gorgeous lake, rolling hills, and a downtown shopping area filled with boutiques, eateries, and coffee shops catering to both locals and tourists alike.

There are also plenty of roadside fruit stands. Havenwood farmers sell their produce at the peak of its season. Among these delicacies is the peach. Sweet, juicy, and a
little tart. That's a fair description of Ella Mae, too!

Enjoy this pie and make sure to leave a comment, because this month's prize is a "Red-Hot" themed collection including a dish towel, small-sized rolling pin, and petite pie mold (see pic). Good luck!

Charmed Georgia Peach Pie

Ingredients

1 Charmed Piecrust (recipe below)

12 fresh, ripe peaches

½ cup firmly packed dark brown sugar

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

¼ cup all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons butter, cut into pieces

1 large egg, beaten

2 tablespoons turbinado sugar (aka sugar in the raw)

Preparation

1. Prepare Charmed Piecrust (recipe below)

2. Peel peaches and cut into slices. Stir together brown sugar, next 2 ingredients, and 1/4 cup flour in a bowl; add peaches, stirring to coat. Immediately spoon peach mixture into piecrust in pie plate, and dot with pieces of butter.

3. Carefully place remaining piecrust over filling; press edges of crusts together to seal. Cut off excess crust and crimp edges of pie. Brush top of pie with beaten egg; sprinkle with 2 Tbsp. granulated sugar and a dusting of cinnamon if desired. Cut 5 slits in top of pie for steam to escape. Or, create a lattice top by cutting dough disk into strips using a fluted pastry wheel. Place on top of filling and follow the egg/sugar/cinnamon finishing touches. Protect edges of crust with foil or pie shield.

4. Freeze pie 15 minutes. Meanwhile, heat a cookie sheet covered with a sheet of parchment paper in oven 10 minutes. Place pie on hot cookie sheet.

5. Bake at 425° on lower oven rack 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 375°; bake 40 minutes. Cover loosely with aluminum foil to prevent over browning, and bake 25 more minutes or until juices are thick and bubbly (juices will bubble through top but parchment paper will protect your tray). Transfer to a wire rack; cool 2 hours before serving.


Charmed Piecrust Recipe

INGREDIENTS

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, very-cold, cut into 1/2 inch cubes (to make the butter cold enough, put in freezer for 15 minutes before use)

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar

6 to 8 Tablespoons very cold water

DIRECTIONS

1 Combine flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor; pulse to mix. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal and you have pea size pieces of butter. Add ice water 1 tablespoon at a time, pulsing until mixture begins to clump together. Put some dough between your fingers. If it holds together, it's ready. If it falls apart, you need a little more water. You’ll see bits of butter in the dough. This is a good thing, as it will give you a nice, flaky crust.

2 Mound dough and place on a clean surface. Gently shape into 2 discs of equal size. Do not over-knead. Sprinkle a little flour around the discs. Wrap each disc in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour.

3 Remove first crust disk from the refrigerator. Let sit at room temperature for 5 minutes or until soft enough to roll. Roll out with a rolling pin on a lightly floured surface to a 12-inch circle (Ella Mae uses a pie mat to help with measurements). Gently transfer into a 9-inch pie plate. Carefully press the pie dough down so that it lines the bottom and sides of the pie plate. Use kitchen scissors to trim the dough to within 1/2 inch of the edge of the pie dish.

4. Roll out second disk of dough and place on top of the pie filling. Pinch top and bottom of dough firmly together. Trim excess dough with kitchen shears, leaving about an inch of overhang. Fold the edge of the top piece of dough over and under the edge of the bottom piece of dough, pressing together. Flute edges by pinching with thumb and forefinger. Remember to score the center of the top crust with a few small cuts so that steam can escape.

Charmed Egg Wash

To achieve a golden brown color for your crust, brush the surface with this egg wash before placing pie in oven.

INGREDIENTS

1 tablespoon half and half

1 large egg yolk

*Note – if you’re short on time and decide to use the pre-made piecrusts found in your grocery store’s dairy section, then use the egg wash on the crusts to give them a homemade flavor.

35 comments:

  1. Oh, nothing beats a good ole Charmed Georgia Peach Pie. I just picked up a small tray of peaches from a local farmer's market (in Northwest Georgia) this week that will be perfect for this recipe. This looks delicious. Can't wait to try it and find out more about Ella Mae.

    Mason

    Thoughts in Progress
    Freelance Editing By Mason

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  2. My grandmother never believed my sister and I would succeed in growing peach trees from pits, until three were growing in her back yard. Must send this recipe to my sister, with a reminder of those trees.

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  3. My family moved to Kentucky after I'd left for college, and when I visited we checked out a local peach orchard. The peaches were astonishing--softball size and incredibly juicy and packed with flavor. In Massachusetts ours are just beginning to appear.

    Now if only I could make a pie crust... I know, I know, people keep giving me recipes, but it's hopeless. I'm crust-challenged!

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  4. Yum Yum. Thanks so much for sharing all of the treats with us. I have yet to attempt pie crust, so the egg wash tip is helpful. Thanks again.

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  5. must try this! finally have a weekend free, I think its going to be a baking weekend!

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  6. I've been enjoying peaches as is, but this peach pie looks very tempting. The Red Hot pie making set is delightful!

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  7. I was just wondering last night -hmmm what am I going to do with these peaches I over bought at Farmer's Market last week? TADA - now I know! Fresh Peach pie with Sunday dinner-thanks!

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  8. Lovely pie making set but even better is the recipe. You have my mouth watering for peaches, peaches, and oh yes, more peaches.

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  9. I'm looking forward to learning more about Ella Mae.

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  10. I'm so glad so many of you have access or have already bought fresh peaches! This is serendipity at its best! I will post the winning name on next month's pie recipe/contest post unless I can find you on Facebook first. So if we're not FB friends, come find me, Ellery Adams! Have a great Saturday!

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  11. I have no idea why I can't post here but I love all the books and all the recipes and thank you for the pie recipe and book today, Ellery! Your fan, Patrice Ekland

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  12. I stopped at the grocery store yesterday evening and they were having a peach festival. There were stations throughout the store and I got to sample peach compote, ice cream with peaches and strawberry sauce, peach punch, peach muffin with mascarpone, pork loin with peach chutney, prosciutto with peach, peach mascarpone on shortbread, and a piece of fresh peach. No peach pie though.

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  13. Both the recipe and Ella Mae sound wonderful. Talking of peaches reminds of the time I went peach picking in college in the Texas Hill Country. Our car was so full of peaches and we had to smell them all the way back to Georgetown. I think I must make a trip to the store.

    Beverly aka Booklady

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  14. This looks so yummy! I've got to find some fresh peaches to try this!

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  15. Looks delicious. Can't wait to read the book.

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  16. WOw that looks sooooo yummy!!!!!!

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  17. Gorgeous looking pie, Ellery, and Ella Mae LeFaye sounds like a "charmed" protagonist. I can't wait to read Pies and Prejudice. (Of course, I'm not in the running for your contest, but I wish I were--that little pie mold is adorable!)

    P.S. Thank you kindly for saying NYC wasn't "bad" - LOL! My Clare Cosi thanks you, too! :)

    ~ Cleo Coffeehouse Mystery.com
    Cleo Coyle on Twitter

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