Blueberry Peach Pie

You probably already know that one of the best things about summer is home-made fruit pie. Peach pie, to be specific, although pies made with peaches and blueberries, or peaches and raspberries, are special too. Juicy, sun-ripened peaches only come around once a year, so when I spied a quart from the Niagara region at the local farmers market the other day, I bought it straightaway and headed for the kitchen.

Helping me with this little project was the wonderful Art of the Pie, by Kate McDermott. With detailed instructions on every possible aspect of pie-making, and gorgeous photography by Andrew Scrivani, whose work appears frequently in the New York Times, this is the only book you will ever need on the subject. It covers all the bases, from pie plates and rolling pins to woven lattice tops and glazes that give your pastry a nice shine and golden colour.  And then there are the recipes, like this one.

 

Although Art of the Pie contains recipes for all kinds of pastry, including several gluten-free options, I chose the traditional all-butter dough, a simple combo of unbleached all-purpose flour, salt, butter and ice water. I also bought a new, 9-inch deep-dish pie plate to avoid spillage from the shallower pie plates that I already own.

A few pointers from the book, to help the nervous among us: Keep everything chilled – the dough, the flour, the fat, even the bowl you make your dough in. Handle the dough as little as possible, then chill it to give the gluten strands time to relax. Roll it out quickly so the fats don’t warm up.

Tapioca, along with flour, makes an ideal thickener. It comes in granular form and gives fruit pies a clear glossy filling with no starchy flavour. Just be sure your fruit filling is bubbling nicely when you take the pie out of the oven, otherwise the tapioca may not have dissolved completely.

Most importantly, don’t strive for perfection. So what if your pastry has been patched together, was making the pie a contemplative process for you? Did you feel creative and are you proud of your work? Does it taste good? The love you put into it will come across no matter what.

Please note that this will be my final blog for awhile. In September, I start a full-time, two-year photography course at the School of the Photographic Arts: Ottawa (spao.ca), and it’s going to keep me busy. But the blog, and the 81 recipes I’ve featured since first posting in December 2013, will still be here should you need to consult. Hopefully I’ll be back eventually with more recipes and some awesome food photography. In the meantime, keep cooking everyone!

5.0 from 2 reviews
Blueberry Peach Pie
Is there anything more homey and life-affirming than fresh-baked pie? This recipe, from Kate McDermott's Art of the Pie, wraps a traditional all-butter dough around a combination of peaches and blueberries. Don't be intimidated with the whole pie-making process and don't strive for perfection. Just follow the instructions. It's as easy as pie.
Ingredients
  • 2 cups (250 g), about 10 ounces, blueberries, fresh or unthawed frozen
  • 4 cups (450 g), about 1½ pounds, ripe peaches, halved, pitted, chopped or sliced
  • ½-1 cup (100-200 g) granulated sugar, depending on sweetness of fruit
  • A small grating of freshly ground nutmeg
  • ⅓ teaspoon (2 g) salt
  • 1 teaspoon (6 g) freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon (15 g) Cointreau or other orange liqueur or zest of one orange (optional)
  • ¼ cup (36 g) flour
  • 2 teaspoons (8 g) quick-cooking tapioca
  • 1 recipe double-crust pie dough
  • ½ tablespoon (7 g) butter
  • 1-2 teaspoons (4-8 g) sugar, for sprinkling on top of the pie
Egg Wash
  • 1 egg white plus 1 tablespoon (15 g) water, fork beaten
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F (22 degrees C).
  2. Put the blueberries, peaches, sugar, nutmeg, salt, lemon juice, optional Cointreau or orange zest, flour and quick-cooking tapioca in a big bowl, and mix lightly until the fruit is coated.
  3. Roll out the bottom dough and place it in your pie pan.
  4. Add the fruit filling and dot with little pieces of butter, if you remember.
  5. Roll out the remaining dough, lay it over the fruit, and cut 5 to 6 vents on top, or cut strips and make a lattice top. Trim excess dough from the edges, and crimp or flute.
  6. Lightly brush some of the egg white wash over the entire pie, including the edges.
  7. Bake for 20 minutes at 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Reduce the heat to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) and bake for 35 to 40 minutes more. When there are about 10 minutes of bake time left, open the oven, pull the pie out, and quickly and evenly sprinkle the top of the pie with sugar. Look for bubbling juice coming through the vents or latticework.
  8. Remove the pie from the oven and cool completely before serving so the filling can set up.
Makes one 9-inch deep-dish pie

5.0 from 2 reviews
Traditional All-Butter Dough
This recipe comes to us from Art of the Pie, by Kate McDermott, a self-described "devoted practitioner of the craft" of pie-making. Her favourite butter for this pastry is Kerrygold Irish Butter, either salted or unsalted, but whatever is available in your area will do. Just remember to keep it chilled.
Ingredients
  • 2½ cups (363 g) all-purpose flour, unbleached (use dip and sweep method)
  • ½ teaspoon (3 g) salt
  • 14 tablespoons (196 g) salted or unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon-size pieces
  • ½ cup (118 g) ice water plus 1-2 tablespoons (15-30 g) more as needed
  • Additional flour for rolling out dough
Instructions
  1. Put all the ingredients but the ice water in a large bowl.
  2. With clean hands, quickly smooth the mixture together, or use a pastry blender with an up and down motion, until the ingredients look like cracker crumbs with lumps the size of peas and almonds. These lumps will make your crust flaky.
  3. Sprinkle ice water over the mixture and stir lightly with a fork.
  4. Squeeze a handful of dough to see if it holds together. Mix in more water as needed.
  5. Divide the dough in half and make two chubby discs about 5 inches (12 centimetres) across.
  6. Wrap the discs separately in plastic wrap, and chill for about an hour.

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4 thoughts on “Blueberry Peach Pie

  1. Avril

    Sebastian and I sure would love to taste this pie! I have never been brave enough to attempt to make a pie. So much work but so delicious to eat!
    Congratulations on enrolling full-time into a photography program Louise! You are going to have a ball I am sure. We look forward to seeing your work.
    Cheers,
    Avril

    Reply
  2. Amanda Shaughnessy

    Louise,
    What a mouth-watering, beautiful looking pie! I wish I could make a pie like that.
    I think I will try making this one; you have encouraged me. Thanks.

    One of “the nervous among us.”
    (Amanda)

    Reply

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