Thursday 17 August 2017

Rustic Fruit Pies

My favorite new dessert this summer is a super quick fruit pie.  I always see photos on Instagram of delicious looking galettes, but I don't like that word.  It sounds too fancy shmancy for me.   They sound daunting.  I like hearing that things are rustic.  It sets the bar nice and low..... and then your mind is blown when you realize how damn delicious they are!  So, seeing all of these super delightful pastries inspired me to make several impromptu batches of my own.   Even my husband, (who isn't a big pie fan,) has to admit that they are a nice little treat.

Peach.  Definitely the house fave

It's hard to post a very specific recipe for this not-at-all-fancy-shmancy rustic fruit pie.  You see, when I make any kind of fruit pie, I rarely use a recipe.  Fruit pies are so forgiving.  A little of this, and a little of that just tends to work out.  If you don't add quite enough sugar, that's ok....just add some ice cream to cut the tartness.  There are endless combinations, and they can be whipped up quickly.  When you make these little rustic pies, they also use a small amount of fruit, so you can make several different flavors at once and have a variety.  So far this summer I've made peach, blueberry, rhubarb and saskatoon rustic pies.  I also combined the rhubarb and saskatoon varieties for a delicious combo.

Basically, the more tart the fruit is (such as rhubarb), the more sugar required, but it's totally a personal preference.   The basic recipe that I fiddle around with is as follows:

-one batch of double crust pastry* (divided into 4)
-Between 3 and 4 cups of chopped fruit of your choice (such as peaches, berries, apples)
-1/4 cup sugar (you can use brown sugar for deeper flavor, which is my preference with peaches)
-2 tbsp flour
-a few dashes of cinnamon and nutmeg (again, this is a personal preference and is optional)
-1 tbsp of milk
-coarse decorating sugar

All ready to pop in the oven
*You could buy some pie crusts, but why?  Cut 3/4 cup vegetable shortening into 2 cups of flour and a dash of salt.  When it resembles coarse crumbs, lightly stir in 8 tbsp of ice cold water until the dough just holds together.  Divide into four discs and cover each individually with plastic wrap. Chill for at least 30 minutes before rolling.

To assemble the pies:
-Roll each pastry disc into a circle until it is approximately 1/4 inch thick

-Lightly stir the diced fruit, sugar, flour and spices together.  Divide them evenly between the 4 pastry rounds. Gently fold the edges of the pastry towards the center of each pie (leaving a nice center of fruit visible) and gently press seems together with your fingertips.

-Gently brush the pastry with milk.  Lightly sprinkle with decorating sugar,  Bake in a preheated 375F oven for approximately 30 minutes, or until golden brown.


Saskatoon Rhubarb

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