Everything’s Peachy!

It’s peach truck season! We wait for it all year. And when the truck arrives, my friends and I hoard several boxes of these blushing beauties and gorge ourselves on one of the most deliciously sweet, juicy fruits on the planet.

Let me explain. These aren’t just any old peaches; they’re peaches from the source. Can you guess? Think license plates. Georgia peaches are sublime. They taste like summer. They remind me of my childhood when things seemed to taste a lot better, and life was less complicated by far.

About twenty peaches into my stash, I started thinking about galettes because they’re so easy and fuss-free to prepare, and this seemed like a natural choice. These peaches didn’t need much help. Just a tiny bit of sugar so that it straddles the fine line between breakfast treat and dessert, a pinch of salt for balance, and not much more.

I remembered that I had a frozen crust for Dorie Greenspan’s beautiful recipe for Apple Pie, Circus-style (referring to the Circus Bakery in Paris), that I intended to try a few months back before getting ridiculously busy. The dough I haphazardly tossed into the freezer came in really handy here. Note that the text italicized in red for Dorie’s dough is where I deviated from the recipe (just like I always tell you not to do).

Dorie’s Apple Pie, Circus-Style Crust

Ingredients:

  • 2 ½ cups/340 grams bread flour
  • ⅓ cup/40 grams whole-wheat flour
  • 4 ½ teaspoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 cup/225 grams cold unsalted butter (2 sticks), cut into small chunks
  • ½ cup/120 milliliters ice water
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

Directions:

Make the dough: Put the bread flour, whole-wheat flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor, and whir to combine. Drop in the chunks of butter, then process in 8 to 10 long pulses, scraping the bowl often until the ingredients look like coarse crumbs and hold together when pressed.

Stir together the ice water and vinegar in a measuring cup, then pour the liquid over the dough as you pulse the machine, forming a moist dough. Scrape the dough onto a work surface. Shape the dough into one large, single disk, wrap and refrigerate for about 1 hour or up to overnight before rolling, or freeze the disk for future use.

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat to 375°F.

Roll the dough between two sheets of lightly floured parchment paper into a 14-inch circle, loosening the parchment from the dough occasionally and adding a bit more flour if it sticks. Transfer on the parchment to a large, rimmed baking sheet; remove and discard the top sheet of parchment.

Diana’s Plain and Simple Peach Filling

Ingredients:

  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp. milk
  • 1-1/2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup turbinado sugar
  • 1/8 tsp. kosher salt
  • 5 to 6 ripe unpeeled peaches (about 1-1/2 lbs.), sliced into 1/3-inch wedges
  • 1 Tbs. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions:

In a small bowl, whisk the egg and milk.

In a large bowl, whisk the flour, 3 Tbs. sugar, and salt. Add the peaches, lemon juice, and vanilla, and toss gently to combine.

Leaving a 2-inch border, spoon the peach mixture and any juice over the dough. Fold the dough border up and over the filling. If the dough sticks to the parchment, refrigerate it for 5 to 10 minutes and then continue folding. Brush the folded dough with the egg wash and sprinkle with the remaining 2 Tbs. sugar.

Bake until the dough is deep golden, and the peaches are slightly caramelized, 40 to 45 minutes. If the dough begins to darken too quickly, cover lightly with foil. Transfer the sheet to a rack to cool for at least 30 minutes before serving.

One final word. If you don’t have peach-truck quality peaches, don’t let that stop you from trying this recipe. Just be sure that your peaches are ripe and juicy, and I promise you’ll be happy with the results.

–Chef Diana

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