August 29, 2015

Maple Bourbon Brown Butter Peach Pie

Oh my, this pie! I want to accidentally fall and land face-first into this pie. Before I pick myself up and deal with the crowd of laughing onlookers, I'll eat all the crumb topping and caramel sauce. Then I'll be the one laughing.

I've said it before, probably with most pie recipes I post, but pies are pretty sparse in my kitchen. This one makes me want to bake pie more often. Particularly this one from Host the Toast. Probably in an apple variety as well.

The crust ended up slightly chewy, for lack of a better description, but still with great flavor. (And chewy is better than soggy for me in pie crust.) The caramel sauce is so good I had to restrain myself from licking my plate at my mother-in-law's house, just a hint of bourbon. And the crumb topping is fantastic!

This pie requires a bit of time and love, as many do. The steps break down fairly easily, so you can do things in between like go to the farmers' market, make lunch and such. It's absolutely worth the effort!

Maple Bourbon Brown Butter Peach Pie
1 cup water
2 1/2 cups flour
1 Tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 cup unsalted butter, very cold
3 lbs. ripe peaches (about 6 peaches)
2 Tbsp. cornstarch
1 1/2 Tbsp. flour
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
Pinch of allspice
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup
3 Tbsp. bourbon
1 Tbsp. water
3 Tbsp. butter
1/3 cup pecans
1/2 cup butter
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. flour
1/2 cup sugar
3 Tbsp. dark brown sugar
1/4 tsp. salt
Pinch cinnamon

Begin by making crust, unless using a pre-made one. Pour one cup of cold water into a bowl, and add a few ice cubes. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together dry ingredients until well-combined. Cut butter in 1/2-inch pieces, and use a pastry cutter to cut into pea-size pieces in the dry ingredients. Drizzle half the cold water (not ice cubes) into the mixture, and use a rubber spatula to mix together. Gradually drizzle in more water as needed to form a dough. Use hands to then knead it into one smooth ball. Divide in half, shape into balls and then flatten slightly, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate. (The second one can be frozen or will last one week in the refrigerator.) Chill at least 1 1/2 hours before rolling.

To roll dough, flour everything generously. Roll dough into a 12-inch circle, working quickly. Carefully place dough into pie pan, and fold any excess underneath (or cut off any large excess). Crimp the edges using your fingers. Chill shaped pie crust another 30 minutes.

Slice peaches (peel if desired), and toss in a large bowl with the cornstarch, flour, cinnamon, salt and allspice.

Preheat oven to 350˚F. (I know this seems weird here, but trust me, it's helps things flow.)

In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the sugar, maple syrup, bourbon and water. Stir only until the sugar dissolves, and then let it come to a boil. Swirl the pan, but do not stir. Cook until mixture turns a deep amber brown, remove from heat and add the butter, swirling until melted. Pour the caramel mixture over the peaches, and mix well. Pour this filling into prepared shell, and return to the refrigerator.

Sprinkle pecans for streusel on a baking sheet, and toast 5 minutes. Increase oven temperature to 425˚F.

In the same saucepan you used for the caramel, melt a stick of butter over medium heat, stirring frequently. Cook until the butter turns golden-brown. Set aside.

Whisk together the dry ingredients for the streusel. Chop the pecans, and stir into dry ingredients. Combine with the browned butter until crumbs form. Cover pie evenly with streusel.

Cover the pie crust edges with foil, and bake 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350˚F, and bake another 30-40 minutes. Crust should be golden and filling bubbly when done. Cool at least three hours before slicing. (Don't worry ... it will still be slightly warm if you wait three hours but will at least not be a pile of goop to slice and scoop.)

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