Pies are what you make for the people you love. Truly.
The kind of love that deepens with every breath in & sometimes causes you to feel as if your heart aches from the sheer volume of it all. The kind that grows over the years, & ages into something beautiful & breath taking.
Yea, I get sappy sometimes.
I learnt to make pies as a child trying to bake my way into my grandfather’s heart, he had a weakness for pecan. I was small & sweet as I would sit on his lap eagerly waiting for his look of approval. I used pre-made crusts back then & thought that if I ground up half the pecans, it would force more of their delicious flavor into each & every bite. I wanted to cram as much love into every mouthful.
Not much has changed.
The older & more experienced I became at the pie making game, the more I realized that the crust is my favorite part. Yes, of course that warm, mellow fruit filling is undeniably satisfying, but the magic is in the crust. It’s a careful balance of thickness & baking. Undercooked by just a few minutes, & it’s too doughy. Measure the ingredients incorrectly, & it will crumble rather than hold it’s shape. Forget to season, & the flavor is underwhelming. Most importantly, it soaks up all that goodness from the filling.
So here’s my secret of all secrets. My crust comes first, always.
Now it just so happens that I love Mel. One of those loves that’s felt from deep within & makes me ache. Maybe it’s because I’ve known him my whole life, hiding out behind the speakers in his room watching him with the same fascination I now reserve for when he’s at work in the kitchen. Yea, he gives me butterflies.
For this man, well, for this man I would do anything. Including making him the most loving pastry dough I think I’ve ever kneaded.
He still doesn’t have much faith in the credibility of gluten-free baking, but my peach pie has done a lot to bridge that gap.
Ingredients, crust: 9″ pie tin
- 160g gluten-free oat flour
- 200g gluten-free white flour blend
- 80g almond meal
- 80g coconut flour
- 2 tsp xanthan gum
- 30g sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 250g unsalted butter, cold & cubed
- 2 egg yolks
- 100ml buttermilk, cold
- 25ml brandy
- 1 egg beaten
- demerara sugar
1. combine the dry ingredients & the butter in a food processor & blend until it resembles a corse meal. Pour the yolk, buttermilk & brandy into the processor & pulse until the dough begins to come together. Remove from the processor & kneed until the dough forms a ball. Divide in two equal portions, flatten into discs & wrap individually in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for an hour before rolling out.
2. grease your pie tin with butter & set aside. Roll out one of the flattened discs to a large enough circle to cover the pie tin, trim the edges.
- 1.5kg peaches
- 2 tbs lemon juice
- 24g corn starch
- 120g light brown sugar
- 0.25 tsp salt
- 32g unsalted butter, melted
- 1 tsp ginger powder
1. the fastest way to clean the skin from the peaches is to submerge them in boiling water for 30 seconds & then quickly transfer them into ice water (this will stop them cooking). Once done, the skins should slide off the the flesh without resistance. Clean the flesh off the stones & chop into large pieces (1″x1″ // 2.5cm x 2.5cm)
2. in a bowl, combine all the ingredients except for the peaches & stir to combine. Add in the peaches & gently stir them to coat the peaches. Pour the mix into the pie shell & cover with the top layer of crust.
3. brush the crust with the beaten egg & sprinkle with demerara sugar.
4. preheat the oven to 220C, insert the pie on the centre shelf & turn down the heat to 175C. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until the crust is a nice golden colour & the inner juices are bubbling & caramelizing. Remove from the oven & allow to cool completely before cutting.
……..for a full history of our recipes, check out our archives. For the more sensitive tummies, check out our gluten-free archives….. and if you’re just interested in something pretty, check out our designed page.