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A friend of mine has a peach tree that is making her say Uncle. It is so heavily laden with peaches that branches are literally falling off before she can pick the fruit. What is she doing with all those peaches, you ask? Everything, that’s what. Pickled peaches, no-churn peach ice cream, peach Schnapps. Think Bubba Gump and his shrimp, but with peaches. So I decided to help her out and I made this peach slab pie.

IMG_2654When I mentioned the slab pie, I had a few friends ask what in the heck is a slab pie. Think of it like a giant pop-tart. Only better. The crust to fruit ratio is much higher than in a traditional pie. More crust = delicious, in my opinion.IMG_2648Speaking of crust, since it is at least half of the pie, it has to be delicious. And buttery. And flakey. Did I mention buttery? Well this one fits the bill. I’ve adjusted it a little to add some sugar since we’re making dessert here. But you really don’t have to. I use this recipe for anything that has a crust. Really. Trust me.IMG_2655Peach Slab Pie

For the crust (adapted from Smitten Kitchen):

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1½ T sugar
  • 1½ T salt
  • 3 sticks of butter, very cold and cut into ¼” cubes
  • ¾ cup very cold water

For the filling:

  • 6 cups peaches (about 7-8 peaches), sliced
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 4 T cornstarch
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp freshly ground nutmeg
  • ¼ tsp salt

For the top:

  • 2 T heavy cream
  • 3 T Demerara or Turbinado sugar

To Make the Crust: In the bottom of a large, wide bowl, whisk together flour, sugar and salt . Using a pastry blender, two forks, or your fingertips (see notes), work the butter into the flour until the biggest pieces of butter are the size of tiny peas. Gently stir in the water with a rubber spatula or your fingers, mixing it until a craggy mass forms. Knead it just two or three times to form a ball. Divide dough roughly in half. Wrap each half in plastic wrap and flatten a bit, like a disc. Chill in fridge for at least an hour or up to two days.

To Make the Filling:

In a large bowl, toss peaches with lemon juice and remaining ingredients. Set aside.

Assembly:

Preheat oven to 375˚F.

On a lightly floured surface, roll one of your dough halves into an 18-by-13-inch rectangle. Work quickly. Try to keep the dough as cold as possible.  Transfer to a 10x15x1 baking sheet (jellyroll pan) that has been lined with parchment. Gently drape some of the overhang in so that the dough fills out the inner edges and corners. Some pastry will still hang over the sides of the pan. Trim this to ¾”.

Pour peach mixture into crust and spread evenly

Roll the second of your dough halves into a 16-by-11-inch rectangle. Drape over filling and fold the bottom crust’s overhang over the edges sealing them together. Cut small slits to act as vents all over lid. Brush top crust with heavy cream and sprinkle with coarse sugar. Bake until crust is golden and filling is bubbling, 40 to 45 minutes. Let cool until just warm before serving.

IMG_2665

Notes:

  • When making any kind of short crust, I always use my fingers. I’ve found that it results in a much, much flakier crust. You could use your food processor, but if you can snap your fingers, you can make a flaky crust. Don’t be afraid. It’s just crust.
  • When I say let it cool before cutting, I mean it. Don’t do what I did. I needed to take the picture so I cut it before it was cool enough and the peachy, fruity liquid started to escape. It was still delicious though.
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