Tuesday, August 7, 2012

peach pecan crumble pie, gluten-free

I'm sitting here in my undies, cherishing the final morning of my too-short weekend, typing away while my sweetheart fries up potatoes and eggs for breakfast.   It's a good feeling, knowing I still have most of the day ahead of me, a walk to the record store, some baking and cooking ideas in the works. 

Oh, and I'm still riding high from seeing none other than the all-time classic 80's film Dirty Dancing last night.  It wouldn't be a big deal really, except that I got to see it on the big screen, complete with karaoke music videos from the movie's kick ass soundtrack.  And no, nobody puts Baby in the corner.

But although incredibly exciting, that isn't the only thing I wanted to tell you about in this post.  I also wanted to inform you about how I put my baking pants on to make the recipe you see in these photos.  First I was inspired by this recipe, and then my inspiration was driven further by the plump, fragrant peaches I've had ripening on my counter for the past few days. 

Peaches are my favorite fruit this time of year.

Well, in truth, I think that whatever fruit is in season is my favorite at that particular time of year.  And summer is a gold-mine of sweet, juicy fruits, many in season simultaneously.  Fresh berries and homemade whipped cream, sliced peaches, or cherries become simple desserts, snacks or breakfasts for me during the warmer months.  One of the many perks of summer.

But before my focus runs amok, let me steer things back to the fruit at hand.  The peach.

Did you know that peaches are a member of the rose family and are native to China?  And that in Chinese folklore, peaches are associated with immortality?  Yes, it's true.  In the Far East, peaches are considered to possess more vitality than any other fruit because their blossoms form before any leaves sprout. 

Well then, all the more reason to make a pie.

This particular pie has more of a shortbready type crust.  That basically means that the recipe calls for a boatload more butter than a typical pie crust does.  Just channel, for a bit, your inner Paula Deen, throw on a Texas accent, and don't give a shit how much butter you bake with.  Trust me, it'll work.

Then slice up the sweetest, most delicious peaches you can find, and prepare to indulge yourself and your family/coworkers/neighbors (but most importantly yourself) in some peach pie.  And don't forget the pecans.  Those go great with the peaches.

This pie turned out to be a huge hit with my sweetheart and I, as well as the lone, lucky GF girl I shared with at work.  Sometimes, I'll spare a piece of something delicious, just to show off my stuff :)

Happy peach season!  And stay tuned for another peach dessert coming your way soon.

Peach Pecan Crumble Pie, Gluten-free
makes 1- 9" pie
gluten free

Carol's Sorghum Blend: make up this blend ahead of time and store any leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge. Try it as your 'all-purpose' GF flour mix in other recipes as well.
1 1/2 C. sorghum flour
1 1/2 C. potato starch
1 C. tapioca starch (or tapioca flour - same thing)
  • Whisk together these three ingredients until well blended.

2 C. sorghum flour blend (see above)
1 tsp. xanthan gum
1/4 C. sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
16 T. (2 sticks) unsalted butter at room temp., cut into small pieces
1 lb. peaches (about 3 medium), pitted and sliced 1/4" thick
1/4 C. brown sugar, packed
1/4 C. sorghum flour blend
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 C. pecans, chopped

  • Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Lightly grease a 9" pie plate and set aside.

  • In a large bowl, whisk 2 C. sorghum blend, xanthan gum, sugar, and salt.  Add butter pieces and use fingers to rub butter and flour together.  The mixture should come together as a soft, very sticky dough.

  • Remove 3/4 C. of dough and transfer to another, smaller bowl.  To this, add brown sugar, 1/4 C. sorghum blend, cinnamon and pecans.  Mix to combine and put bowl in the freezer.

  • Scrape the remaining dough into the prepared pie pan and press into pan with well-floured hands.  Dough should be in an even layer across pan and slightly up the sides.

  • Lay peach slices on top of the crust in a circular pattern, overlapping slightly.  Remove crumble topping from the freezer and sprinkle about half of it over the peaches, pressing it down firmly, but gently.
    • **(I found that I had too much topping when completing this step and decided to use only half, pressing the remainder into a small tart dish, topping with more peach slices, and baking for 30 minutes - voila! mini peach tart.)

  • Bake pie in the preheated oven for about 45 minutes, or until topping is evenly, golden brown.

  • Allow to cool completely before slicing.  I chilled mine to make slicing easier.

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