I prefer cobbler. I would rather have a cobbler over a pie any day. I like my dough mixed into my fruit. My wife however would rather have a pie. So what is one to do. Can we have our pie and eat it too? I found a solution that pleased the two of us. I made a peach pie but instead of the standard pie top, I used a streusel topping. This brought a cobbler like feeling to the pie which made it much more pleasing to me and made my wife happy too.
For the pie crust, I use Alton Brown's recipe from the Good Eats episode "I Pie". This crust uses both butter and lard, giving you the best of both fats. The only change I made in the recipe was I use pastry flour instead of just the standard AP. I really like the tenderness you get when using pastry flour.
The peach filing contains the best fresh peaches I could find along with a combo of white and brown sugar along with some cinnamon and freshly grated nutmeg. I got the recipe from this site. For the brown sugar I made my very own brown sugar combining pure cane sugar and Molasses - creating a dark brown sugar.
For the streusel topping you use an equal part brown sugar and flour along with some cold butter. I also add a sprinkling of demerara sugar. This type of sugar doesn't melt when baked, so it adds a bit of extra crunch to the topping.
For the pie crust
- 3 ounces butter chilled
- 1 ounce lard chilled
- 8 ounces about 1 cup pastry flour
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ cup ice water
For the peach filling
Making the pie crust
- Combine the flour and salt in your favorite mixing bowl.
- Cut in the butter and lard. I just use my hands to rub the butter into the flour mixture until it resembles corn meal.
- Then add the ice cold water. Cold water will keep the butter from melting. You just want enough water to bring the dough together. Add more a little a time if you need to.
- Form the dough into a disc and wrap in plastic wrap.
- Place in the fridge for 1 hour. This gives the flour time to hydrate as well as making sure the fat is cold.
Making the filing
- While the crust is in the fridge, peel and slice your peaches for your filling. Place the sliced peaches in a bowl and add both sugars, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
- Taste and add more sugar or spices if needed.
- Then add potato or tapioca flour. Mix to combine.
- Cover with plastic wrap and set aside.
Making the topping
- Make the topping using the same method you did to make the pie crust. First combine flour and sugar.
- Then work in the butter. Set aside.
Getting the dough in the pan
- Take the dough out of the fridge. Roll out the dough into a circle. I place my pie pan over top the dough to see if my circle is big enough if not, I keep going until it is.
- Lay the pie pan back on top of the dough. Flip over. Straighten the dough out if need to be to make it fit.
- Then using a fork, dock the dough.
- Blind bake in the oven for 10 mintues at 400 degrees. Remove from oven.
Add the filling and topping
- Now just dump your filling into the pie shell. Make sure the filling is distributed evenly.
- Now sprinkle on evenly your topping. The pieces should be small so if you have a big chunks, make sure to break them down before sprinkling on top.
- Then add a few pinches of demerara sugar if you have it right on top.
- Bake in a 350 degree oven for 35-45 minutes or until the topping and crust has started to brown.
- Check the pie after 20 minutes to see how it's progressing.
- Never cut into a hot pie.
- The filing needs time to cool and set up or you will end up with a soupy mess. So just wait until the pie cool completely before enjoying. Resist the urge. Leave the house or lock the pie into a safe if you need to. If you having trouble waiting you can always read all of my 1000 plus posts!
It's a pie, but it still has some character of a cobbler. I loved it way more than any other fruit pie I have made. For me having a top and bottom crust is just too much. This is just perfect. It's the way I am going to do fruit pies from now on. The debate between whether to make a pie or a cobbler is now RESOLVED!!!!!