During the few years I spent living in Los Angeles, I realized that west coasters have a lot of ingrained beliefs about Southerners that just aren’t true. Ask a Californian who has never met a real person from the South and you’ll discover that we all use “bless your heart” as an insult, eat fried foods at every meal and get married straight out of high school.

Now, those things aren’t strictly untrue, but I’d like to think there’s more to us generally than all that. Being from Georgia, there was one particular stereotype that I couldn’t escape — peaches.

Everyone assumed that being from the Peach State meant that I could make peach desserts of all kinds and had peach trees in my yard growing up. Luckily for them, both of those particular assumptions are true.

My Granny had a tree in her backyard while I was growing up that would be so heavy with peaches at the end of a season that we’d have to send fruit over to the neighbors and take some to church to keep the birds from swarming. I’ve shared her recipe for the world’s best peach cobbler with you in the past, so, today, we’re going to talk about peach pie.

This peach pie is a staple at my house. Made with a homemade lattice-topped double crust and filled with deliciously ripe peaches, it truly can’t be beat. The crust is buttery and flaky, covered in melted butter for a beautiful golden glow, and tastes like summer in every bite.

I always use fresh peaches because they lend a little something special, but the nice thing is that you can bring summer to your table year round with just a few of the thawed, formerly-frozen and store-bought variety.

Want to try your hand at your own Peach Pie? Here’s what you need:

For the crust:

♦ 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

♦ 1/2 teaspoon salt

♦ 1/4 cup vegetable shortening

♦ 1/4 cup butter (and extra for buttering pie plate)

♦ 4-5 tablespoons ice water

For the filling:

♦ 4 cups sliced peaches

♦ 1 cup sugar + 2 tablespoons for topping

♦ 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

♦ 2 tablespoons melted butter

Here’s how you make it:

Crust:

  1. Butter a 9-inch pie plate and set aside. In a large bowl, combine the flour and salt. Cut in the shortening and butter until the mixture resembles a coarse meal. I usually do this using two forks, but a pastry blender might come in handy here if you have one on hand.
  2. Slowly add ice water to the mixture until a ball of dough can be formed. Pour the dough out onto a lightly floured sheet of plastic wrap and shape into a disc. Flour the top of the dough disc and place another sheet of plastic wrap on top, being careful not to trap air inside. Starting from the center using a pin (or the side of a cup in a pinch), roll until the dough is about a ⅛-inch thickness. Remove the top piece of plastic wrap, fold the dough over and lay it across the pie plate. Remove the bottom piece of plastic wrap. Press the pie dough lightly into the bottom and sides of the pie plate. Cover with a piece of plastic wrap and place in the freezer to set for at least 30 minutes. I usually opt to leave it overnight.
  3. Repeat this process in order to have a second pie crust, but do not press the dough into a pie plate. Store it in the refrigerator in the disc-shape, covered in plastic wrap, until you are ready to bake your pie.

Filling:

  1. When you are ready to bake, preheat your oven to 425º F. Remove the pie plate from the freezer and use a fork to lightly prick the bottom and sides of the dough, then bake the pie crust for about 8 minutes without any filling inside. As it cooks, roll the refrigerated dough out and cut into 1-inch thick strips. Place the strips back into the refrigerator until you are ready to top the pie.
  2. Place the sliced peaches, sugar and flour in a large saucepan set over a low heat. Stir well and simmer until a thick syrup has formed, usually about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
  3. Once cooled, pour peaches on top of the bottom dough in the pie plate. Arrange the strips on top of the peaches in a lattice pattern. Brush with melted butter and sprinkle top of the cobbler with two tablespoons of sugar.
  4. Place the pie into the oven and bake until the crust has browned, about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to rest about 5 minutes before serving.

Kelcey Caulder is a reporter for the Calhoun Times. She was born in North Carolina and raised in Georgia. After spending the last three years in Los Angeles, she’s pretty stoked to be back in the South, where the food is good and the people are friendly. You can email her at KCaulder@CalhounTimes.com.

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