Nothing says summer like a fresh fruit pie. On a nice July day, the smell of a peach pie baking is irresistible.
After washing, remove the pits and slice into pieces about 1/2" thick. Saucy leaves the skins of the peach on, but it's entirely up to you. Some cooks like the flavour and the colour the skins add (in this case, a little deep red and a tangy bite) and some prefer the smoothness that skinning the peach gives to the dessert. Saucy leaves the skins on because she just can't resist that extra zing they add. Also, leaving the skin on is easy... and this is supposed to be easy.
Yes, you'd never leave the skin on an apple in a pie, but this is a peach and have faith, it will bake down nicely. Without the skin, the filling can be a little like canned peaches.
Prepare two 9" rounds of your favourite pastry recipe. Saucy uses her food processor and cuts 1/2 cup cold butter into 1 and 1/4 cups white flour with a dash of salt and about a tablespoon of sugar until it is coarse like peas. Then she simply pours about three tablespoons of ice water into the machine and pulses quickly until the dough gathers... turns it out to a floured surface and rolls into a 9" round.
Prepare your dough before you finish preparing the fruit. You'll see why in a minute. Get the bottom of your pie pan filled with that first round of dough.
In a large bowl mix two tablespoons of corn starch, two tablespoons of quick cooking tapioca (that's Granny's old trick), 3/4 cup sugar, a pinch of salt and about 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon. You may find that odd in a peach pie... but cinnamon isn't just for apples. Toss the fruit into the blended starch and sugar mixture quickly, covering every piece.
See how saucy and immediately gooey and runny the fruit gets when you toss it around in there? That's why you need to have your dough ready int the pan. Get it in there, pronto.
There really is something wonderful about an unbaked pie... don't you think? It holds a world of possibilities.
Don't get too excited. The whole thing needs to chill the fridge, unbaked, for about a half hour. You can turn your oven on to 375 in the meantime.
Oh, and nobody has enjoyed a pie pan quite like Saucy has enjoyed the Pampered Chef Deep Dish Pie Plate that MJ gave her about five years ago. It's brilliant. Sometimes, Saucy just heaps and heaps fruit into that plate and it looks pretty ridiculous before she bakes it. She'll show you one of those sometime. This one wasn't so ridiculous.
Before baking, you can choose to brush the top crust with a beaten egg white and sprinkle with sugar.
Your pie will be done baking in 50-60 minutes. It should be golden brown on top and the juice should not run clear... it should look cloudy and thick like a nice sauce.
Cool and serve. Now do you see what Saucy means about the peach skin? It just adds something. Something delicious. Something summery.
Ice cream adds something delicious, too. Scoop it on, people. You only live once.