Thursday, July 21, 2011

Bourbon & Brown Sugar Peach Pie with Cornmeal Crust

I have been waiting for peach season ever since I thought about making this pie [which may or may not have been months ago]. And I've been pretty excited.

In fact, I think I would gladly stuff my face with any combination of the major ingredients in this pie. Peaches + bourbon? Cornbread + peaches? Bourbon + brown sugar? [um wow...stand by for a new drink recipe...]. The smells radiating from my oven while this was baking were nothing short of heavenly.

I'm definitely not a person who hesitates to use store bought crusts. Despite my dreams of being able to make a flawless pie crust from memory, it's honestly usually so much faster and dependable for me to use store bought. That being said, this crust is DELICIOUS and totally worth making from scratch if you're looking for something a little different.

I'm usually not that partial to plain pie crust, and when the filling's gone I leave whatever crust is left over, but I found myself chowing down on this leftover crust long after the peaches had been on the plate. It tastes exactly like the pastry version of cornbread.

To make this lattice top [which I hope makes you think plaid! because that's kinda what I was going for] I did a regular lattice top but just alternated 1" and 1/2" wide stripes. To cut them I used my clear ruler and a pastry cutter. Quilting is such a useful hobby! Don't worry, I washed the ruler before and after it was amongst my beloved fabric stash.

Bourbon & Brown Sugar Peach Pie with Cornmeal Crust
5 cups peeled & thinly sliced peaches (about 6 or 7 medium)
1/2 c white sugar
1/2 c brown sugar
1/2 c flour
1 tsp cinnamon
pinch salt
2 tsp lemon juice
1/4 c bourbon
1 tbsp butter
1 batch cornmeal pie dough (recipe follows)

1. Mix up the pie dough and let it chill for an hour.
2. Peel and slice the peaches.
3. In a medium bowl, mix the flour, white sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt.
4. In a large bowl, combine the flour mixture, peaches, lemon juice and bourbon. Mix until well coated.
5. Roll out half the pie dough on a floured surface into a 12" circle and put into a 9" pie pan. Fill the pie shell with the filling. Cut the butter into small pieces and distribute over peaches. Then roll out the second half of the dough and make the top of the pie as desired.
6. Brush the crust with milk and dust with sugar [coarsely ground turbinado sugar works best].
6. Wrap the outside of the crust in foil. Bake in a 400 degree F oven for 30 min. Reduce the heat to 350 and bake for another 25-30 min until crust is toasty brown and filling is bubbling. Serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Cornmeal Pie Dough
2 1/4 c flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
2 tbsp sugar
1 tsp salt
6 tbsp cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
6 tbsp cold shortening, cut into small cubes
1/2 c - 3/4 c cold milk

1. In a large bowl whisk together the flour, cornmeal, sugar and salt until well combined.
2. Add butter and shortening. Make sure it's cold, cold, cold! Using a pastry cutter or two knives, cut butter and shortening into flour mixture until everything resembles small pellets.
3. Add 1/2 c of the milk slowly, tossing with a fork, until mixture can be packed. Add more milk if necessary.
4. Separate into 2 disks. Make one slightly larger for the bottom crust. Wrap each disk in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.

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