Summer time is pie time. After years of resistance, I have come to love a good fruit pie, with juices running every which way. But as seasonal as it is, fruit pie is not often convenient for summer activities. It doesn’t go on road trips, or to the beach. It doesn’t slip into sack lunches for camp, or feed the crowd at the Friday night neighborhood barbecue.
Enter slab pie. It may sound unprepossessing, but slab pie is a pinch hitter for summer fun. Sure, a higher crust to fruit ratio makes it neater to take along with you, but it’s also just a little sassier – big enough to feed a crowd, with a slick of icing and generous proportions, it’s the Fat Amy to regular fruit pie’s Becca. (Bonus points if you get my reference.)
Below, a comparison:
Eat at a Table
More Fruit than Crust
Feeds a Few
Plain Topped, Somewhat Austere Crust
Eat at a Picnic
More Crust Than Fruit
Feeds a Crowd
Icing! (Think: Pop Tart)
Slab pie just feels casual, and bountiful and easy. It says barbecues and picnics and pool parties and cut just another little bite. And that’s the spirit of summer time.
A note about peeling peaches: It does add more to the time, but it’s worth doing. It’s actually pretty satisfying to peel the peaches – cut a shallow x in the base, drop them into boiling water, then ice water, and the skin peels off like magic. If you ever peeled skin off a sunburn (I know, gross, but also you know you do it) or put glue on your hand in grade school for the pleasure of peeling it off later (I can’t be the only one who did this) you will dig peeling peaches. If you now think I’m totally off my rocker, you can sub in nectarines instead. Just please – no white nectarines, and no fuzzy peaches.
- 8 largish peaches (about 3 lbs, to yield about 6 cups fruit)
- Juice ½ lemon
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 tsp almond extract
- 3 Tb ground almonds or almond flour
- 3 Tb. Cornstarch
- 2 recipes sour cream pie crust (I like this pie crust because it is easy peasy to roll out. I've also subbed in whole Greek yogurt for the sour cream, but that results in a slightly sturdier crust. Which is not a bad thing, necessarily)
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 1 tsp. lemon juice
- ½ tsp. almond extract
- 3-4 Tb. water (or until pourable consistency)
- Make a shallow but large cross in the bottom of the skin of each peach - along the crease and perpendicular to it, away from the stem end. Slip the peach into boiling water for 10-15 seconds, then into ice water. The skin will peel off easily. If it doesn't, you can repeat the boiling/ice water bath process.
- Cut the peaches into bite sized pieces, and toss with the lemon juice, sugar, almond extract, ground almonds and cornstarch.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees, and line a 10X15 rimmed cookie sheet with parchment.
- Roll one recipe of crust out on a floured surface to a rectangle larger than your pan. Carefully roll the dough over your rolling pin and transfer it to the pan, so that there's overhang on all edges.
- Spread the peach filling over the pie dough.
- Roll out your second recipe of pie dough. Drape it over the peaches. Use a knife to trim away excess (this is designed to make extra pie dough - I HATE coming up short, so I'd always prefer to make a bit extra), then roll the bottom crust over the top one to create a sealed, raised edge within the rim of your pan.
- Using a small cookie cutter, cut air vents out of your top crust. (I made a polka dot pie).
- Bake for 40-55 minutes, until the crust is golden.
- When the pie has cooled, mix the ingredients for the glaze until pourable consistency, and brush it over the top of the pie.