A Vintage Recipe Box + The Peach Truck = Summer Peach Pies

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A few weeks ago  I was rummaging around in an antique mall and found an old recipe box (see below) with each recipe carefully written out in old-fashioned beautiful “Cursive”. As you can see the box has been mended with tape multiple times and bears all the tell-tale signs of being much used. I fell in love with it.

Don’t you think it is beautifully interesting?  Whose was it?  Why does some daughter or son not have it in their kitchen right now? Whoever you are, or were, your recipe box is going to be well taken care of.

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As I was looking through the recipes I noticed something interesting when it came to the desserts…cakes, pies, puddings. They all call for about half as much sugar as what I am used to seeing in newer recipes. Perhaps this was just particular to the owner of this box, perhaps someone in the family needed to watch their sugar intake, or maybe these dessert recipes are from a time where our palates had not become so used to “sugar overload”? I wanted to try this recipe for “Peach Pie (Fresh)” because it just sounded so simple and “fresh”.

This same week I had purchased my first bag of “The Peach Truck” Georgia peaches (featured in the Summer Issue of “Sweet Paul” magazine) at the Downtown Nashville Farmer’s Market. I left them in the bag for a few days to ripen. A great pair…this recipe & the ripe peaches!

The Peach Truck Peaches

What you will need to make  this “Peach Pie (Fresh)”

6-8 fresh ripe peaches

1/2 cup raw sugar or white sugar + extra for dusting on top of the finished pie

1 pie crust for a double crust pie – 1 to line the pan + 1 for the lattice top (I used a wonderful slightly sweet pie dough recipe based on one found in Alisa Huntsman’s cookbook “Desserts from the Famous Loveless Cafe”(see end of blog for directions for this wonderful crust which I highly recommend.)  If you do not “make pie crusts” then use a store-bought one dusted with a bit of powdered sugar.

Before we make the pie I am going to show you the easiest way in the world to peel a peach……

peach peeling

Cut an “X” in the bottom of each peach.

peach peeling

Gently drop peaches into softly boiling water.

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Remove peaches from simmering water after about 2 minutes & quickly plunge into ice water.

Peeling peaches

Using your fingers gently peel back peach skin from the bottom of each peach where you made the “X”. The skin will slip right off with just a bit of coaxing.

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Now we will make our basic lattice topped “Peach Pie (Fresh)”.

1. Roll out and fit one of the pie crusts into the bottom of 8 or 9 inch regular pie pan somewhat “fluting” the sides if you like. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

2. Cut peaches into wedges away from the pit & place in a bowl. You should about 6 cups of cut-up peaches for this pie.  Add 1/ 2 cup white granulated sugar as the recipe calls for or raw sugar if you prefer. Toss the peaches & sugar together.

raw sugar

3. Fill bottom pie crust with sugared peaches & their juice.

peaches in pie crust

4. Roll out 2nd/top crust to make the lattice. Cut into random strips with a sharp knife. Place the strips over the top of the peaches weaving them over and under each other  in opposite directions. I do not even try to make my “lattice” tops perfect but a bit more artful and random which I think is prettier. As you may have guessed I am not a lover of perfection, just things that are perfectly, beautifully not perfect.

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5. Tuck ends of lattice strips under the bottom crust edge and re-flute.

lattice pie crust

6. Place the uncooked pie on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Dust with some additional sugar if desired, pop in the oven and bake for about 20 minutes. Turn oven down to 350 and cook for another 30 minutes or until the peaches are hot and bubbly and the crust is golden brown and crispy. Serve warm as is or with a scoop of ice cream.

Wedge of peach pie

Okay, now let me tell you a couple of things about this recipe. It was indeed not icky sweet nor “gloopy” as fruit pies can sometimes turn out with too much cornstarch. The bottom crust was not soggy, the top crust was flakey and over all this pie tasted like I think a peach pie should taste. This is how a fruit pie should taste…like the ripe fruit used complementing a flakey crust & just enough sugar to call it dessert. No soggy crust or gloopy-ness!

Here are a few other variations on this peach pie recipe I made with the extra dough…

“A Wee Fresh Peach & Blueberry Pie”

Made the same way with the addition of fresh blueberries & a cookie cutter cut out crust top in a little 6″ pie pan.

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and…..”A Very, Very Wee Fresh Peach Pie”

Just fresh sugared peaches, pie crust leftovers rolled out in a 3 inch tartlet pan.

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And here is how to make this very good pie crust. Thanks Alisa!

Here is my version of Alisa’s pie crust:

1. Measure 2 1/2 cups flour + 1/2 cup confectioner sugar into the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a couple of times.

2. Cut 1 1/2 stick of butter into small cubes & freeze for 5 minutes. Then sprinkle over the flour-sugar mixture & pulse a few times to mix in.

3. To the processor add 3 cold egg yolks & pulse again 3 or 4 times to blend somewhat.

4. To bring it all together drizzle 1/4 to 1/2 cup cold buttermilk or regular milk over the flour mixture through the feed tube of the processor until a dough ball begins to form. Remove dough & form into 4 dough balls flattened. Wrap each one with plastic & chill for 10 minutes before rolling out to make your pie crust.

Oh no!!!! we are finished yet…here’s a few tips for fitting your wonderful crust into your pie pan. Roll it, fold it in half…

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…fold again…..place in pie pan with the point in the center….

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…unfold the same way you folded…..

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…flute or not,  & fill.

Spider: [eating the peach] Mmmmm. Better than ladybugs.

Ladybug: What?

Spider: Excuse me.

Earthworm: It’s not dirt…

[takes a bite of the peach]

Earthworm: But it’s not bad.

(from “James and the Giant Peach”

 

 

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34 comments

  1. angelamroberts

    Those pies look beyond tasty. They look friendly, home, delicious, everything wonderful in life. I always put half the sugar in a recipe because it feels right to me. I think over the years, people thought more sugar was better. My friend recently made a buttermilk pie that called for two cups of sugar. She didn’t realize and it was inedible. That recipe box looks like a total gem, and now I will have peach pie on my mind all week.

    • Angela I try to eat all the peaches I can hold while they are in season and make a few jars of jam or preserves for the winter months. Yes, there can be too much sugar in a recipe can’t there. Thanks.

  2. Teresa,
    Your peach pie looks fantastic and I will bake it as soon as possible. My husband loves pies and I rarely make them. I am intrigued by your crust recipe, it is different from the ones I know and I am ready to try something new.
    Thank you

  3. I’m so happy that the recipe box ended up in the hands of someone who appreciates it! What an adventure, to think about the life of someone you’ve never met through recipes. The handwriting looks a lot like my grandmother’s, but I’ve got her recipes! I’m jealous of the lovely penmanship of that generation :)

    • I have been reading so much in the news about “cursive” recently…about bringing it back in schools. I am not sure this will ever happen, perhaps they should teach “calligraphy” instead to get kids interested in decorative writing? Thanks for stopping by.

  4. How great are those old recipes? I love it when my mom gives me one of her old recipes. :) Even more exciting when it’s recipes from someone else…
    You pictures are beautiful as always! Thank you for sharing your experience and such a great story with us, Teresa. :)

  5. At first I was so sad the recipe box had no family member who had wanted it. How tragic. It has found the perfect home in your hands Teresa. There could be a cookbook in there! All 3 pies were beautiful. Interesting crust. I just picked up my Sweet Paul magazine and wish I could dig into it and a slice of your pie! Those peach truck peaches look amazing.

  6. You found a little treasure and I’m sure the owner would have been thrilled to know you made her pie, it looks great. Summer must always include at least one peach pie. Wish that peach truck traveled to New England, there is nothing like a sweet ripe peach.

    • Karen thanks so much and I hope you get to bite into a few good peaches this summer. There really is nothing like that flavor. We are so lucky to have The Peach Truck folks here with their great peaches all summer long.

  7. Absolutely gorgeous Teresa. The recipe box and cards are such treasure. Interesting that the sugar quantities are lower. And the pies…oh my! I noticed how wonderful your uneven lattice work looked immediately. You have such an eye! I just want to run out and buy some peaches, right now!!

      • I did get a punnet the other day and they are ripening – planning to make your pie, blog the my photos and link to your post for people to find you, your amazing blog and the recipe…xx

      • A punnet is a small container of summer fruit! I did’t realise how “English” that word was until I looked it up! It is believed to be derived from the cockney fruit sellers selling the little baskets at a ‘pun a pound. I am guessing that pun refers to halfpence which we don’t have anymore! Nowadays, we buy strawberries, raspberries, peaches, apricots etc in lunchbox sized thin plastic containers which either have a heat sealed top of plastic or come encased in plastic sleeves. If we buy from the farms they come in small plastic baskets without any tops…not very glamorous but at least they are all now made of recyclable plastic!

  8. Pingback: Upside Down Olive Oil Georgia Peach Cake (Gluten Free Y’All) | "food on fifth"

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