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Ripe peaches shine in this rustic peach crostata. Top it with a scoop of vanilla ice cream for an easy summer dessert.
It’s no secret that I have a crazy sweet tooth. And I come by it by no fault of my own. I hail from a long line of those that require “just a bite of something sweet” after dinner. It could be a scoop of ice cream, a cookie, or my most favorite, a slice of pie.
Growing up, we rarely encountered a night when dessert wasn’t served alongside a cup of steaming hot coffee after dinner. Of course we ate much earlier than I tend to eat now. It just seems more reasonable to have a bite of dessert when you’re done with dinner at 6:30, rather than the 8:30 or 9 pm to which I am now accustomed. So while I still crave a little something sweet every night, I don’t always act on it.
My love of pies is a definitely an adult preference. As a kid, I would pass on the pie and head right for a slice of oooey, gooey cake, preferably chocolate. (I’m not counting my very necessary slice of pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving.) The more decadent the dessert and thick the frosting, the more I wanted it. But, as we know, tastes change as we get older (or so I keep telling my kids). And now a slice of pie, especially filled with seasonal fruit, is my go-to.
I know so many people think that they don’t have time to make a pie, or especially homemade crust. But (and yes I’m a broken record) you do! Whenever I’m making pie dough, I double or triple the recipe. Then I wrap up the extra doughs and stack them in the freezer for another time. They defrost pretty quickly on the counter and make whipping up a homemade pie a snap. Yes a snap!
Even easier than making a pie from scratch is making a crostata. It’s basically a rustic pie…no pie plate, no fancy edges, crimping or lattice…just simple deliciousness. This is definitely one of those times that the less perfect, the better. I have some tips on making a crostata here, as well as making and rolling out your dough. And you can check out my video below where I demonstrate just how simple it is to make this delicious dessert. Sometime a picture (okay a video) really is worth a thousand words!
- Buttery Pie Crust
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 Tbsp sugar
- 3/4 tsp kosher salt
- 4 oz 1 stick unsalted butter, very cold
- 1 Tbsp shortening very cold
- 1/4 cup ice water
- Peach Crostata
- 5 peaches
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 Tbsp corn starch
- 1 egg lightly beaten with 2 tsp of water
- 2 Tbsp turbinado sugar coarse sugar
Pie Crust:Combine the flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Pulse a few times to mix.
Add the butter and shortening and pulse about 10 -12 times until the fat is cut into the flour mixture and it's pea size.
Pour in about ⅔ of the ice water and pulse a few more times until a ball begins to form, adding more water as needed. Be careful not to overmix. The dough should not be completely blended, it will come together on the counter.
Scrape dough onto the counter and form it into a flat disc. Wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour or overnight. (Dough can also be frozen for several weeks. Defrost in refrigerator before proceeding.)
Make the crostata: Roll out pie dough into a large round, about ⅛ inch thick and place on a parchment lined sheet tray. Place in the refrigerator to chill.
Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil and fill a large bowl with ice water. Score the bottom of each peach with an X and drop into the boiling water. After 2 mins, remove the peaches with a slotted spoon and place in ice water. Allow to cool for a few mins and remove to dry on paper towels.
Using a paring knife, peel the peaches. Then halve the peaches, remove the pit and thinly slice.
Carefully toss the peach slices with the lemon juice, brown sugar, spices, salt, pepper and corn starch.
Remove the pie crust round from the refrigerator and arrange the peach slices in concentric circles, leaving a wide edge to fold over. Trim the ends to form an even border.
Fold and pleat the border around the filling, leaving the center exposed. Don't worry about perfect folds, it's meant to have a rustic appearance.
Place the unbaked crostata into the refrigerator for about 15 minutes to chill. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Remove, brush the edges with the egg wash and sprinkle with the turbinado sugar.
Bake for about 40-45 mins or until peaches are tender and can be easily pierced with a knife and the crust is golden brown.
Serve with vanilla ice cream if desired.