peach and blueberry crostata
We have a peach tree at the end of our driveway, right next the mailbox. A few weeks ago, the limbs were straining under the weight of a full load of ripe, juicy peaches. A few days after that, I walked to the mailbox, grabbed its contents, and started walking back up the driveway. About halfway up, my brain said, “wait! um, were any peaches on the tree?” So I turned back around to investigate. No peaches on the lower branches. Hmm. None on the upper tiers, either. No peaches on the entire tree, not a single one!! Suspect #1: deer. But can deer reach up to 10 feet? (Circus deer?) And are they determined and hungry enough take pluck every.single.one? #2: Human. What kind of person would do that, though?! And be so thorough! #3: Alien peach abduction. (kidding!) Have any theories?
I wasn’t too broken up about the loss of the peaches, though. Our supermarkets are overflowing with cheap, ripe and juicy Georgia peaches. I may have picked up a few too many, along with a couple pints of yummy blueberries. No problem, though, they made a nice filling for a crostata. Crostatas are perfect for people like me who are too lazy to make a pie. (I’m going to blame the heat–108!) Bakes up perfectly in the toaster (so you don’t heat up your kitchen too much) while you lounge about on your chaise in front of the a/c. Hello, Georgia summer!
The pie crust recipe is from the gorgeous Zuni Cafe Cookbook. I remember admiring the picture of their incredibly flaky peach crostata, but being too intimidated by the instructions. Chez Pim does a beautiful job of illustrating the process, making it easy to create the perfect pie dough. Recipe HERE. I made the full recipe, putting half in the freezer for a rainy day. Here’s hoping that day comes soon!
Peach and Blueberry Crostata
1/2 a recipe pie dough from chez pim
2 large, ripe peaches, pitted and cut into eighths
1 cup blueberries
cornstarch, about a tablespoon
(1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste)
(sugar, to taste, if fruit is tart)
streusel topping (recipe in instructions)
Place a pizza stone on the center rack of your oven and preheat to 400.
Toss peaches and blueberries with cornstarch, plus vanilla and sugar if using, in a bowl until evenly coated.
Roll out your pie crust to a rough 12″ circle. Transfer crust to a piece of parchment on a cookie sheet or paddle, so you can slide it into the oven. Put fruit filling in the center, then fold dough around it. (Brush with eggwash if you want a darker golden crust, as this crust doesn’t get very dark on its own.)
Top with streusel. (In a small bowl, mix together 1/4 cup light brown sugar, 1/4 cup rolled oats, 3 tablespoons flour, 2 tablespoons cold butter, and a pinch of salt. Use your fingertips to smash the butter into the dry ingredients, until you have a crumbly mixture.)
Slide crostata/parchment onto pizza stone and bake until filling is very bubbly and the crust is light golden brown. This took about 45 minutes in my oven. Let cool at least half an hour before serving. Best served the same day–still good the next but crust gets much softer.