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Baked and beautiful: Peach and Blueberry Pie

peach and blueberry pie

I’ve already mentioned my dislike for cooked-fruit desserts here on Kitchenist. It’s the texture: fruit should be crunchy (apples), or crisp (grapes), or at the most pleasantly yielding (bananas), but never a soft, mushy mess. Try as I might, I’ve never been able to get over this hangup. As a consequence, pies have been off the menu for most of my life. Sure, I’ll take a lemon meringue one or a yummy chocolate version, but an old-fashioned apple pie? Forget it.

However, there is one fruit pie that I’ll eat, and happily. My mum’s peach pie is not only baked, but it’s absolutely delicious. I’m not sure what makes this pie so different (I’m amazed she got me to try it in the first place), but I have a hunch. It’s made with fruit halves instead of slices, and while fruit slices can quickly disintegrate into mush territory, whole peach halves have a bit more structural integrity.

peach and blueberry pie

More importantly though, did I mention that it’s a peach pie? That alone was probably enough to convince me. To my tastebuds, nothing says August like a juicy, ripe Ontario peach. Growing up we ate them all the time, so imagine how upset I was when I moved to London and discovered that you can’t get peaches here. Well, of course you can- but they’re imported, and just not as tasty as my beloved Ontario ones. Watery peaches with an aftertaste of environmental guilt do not a happy Ele make. Believe it or not, but I haven’t had a peach in almost three years. 

peach and blueberry pie

Given that a) for nearly three years I’d behaved like a paradigm of virtue, b) I was craving peaches like there was no tomorrow, and c) I really wanted to share this recipe on the blog, I decided, just this one, to cave in a buy some peaches. Only, I couldn’t. No, not the guilt again- the peaches! Apparently I’m the only one with such misgivings about imported fruit, because my grocery store was completely barren of the fruit when I went to buy it. As in there was a single sad, bruised fruit at the bottom of an otherwise empty bin. Determined to have my pie, I bought some nectarines instead. I mean they’re just fuzzless peaches, after all.

peach and blueberry pie

To get my hands on Mum’s recipe, I asked my sister. She’s usually more on the ball with these things than I am, and I figured she’d have it already. Turns out my favourite peach pie is from the famous Canadian Mennonite cookbook Food that Really Schmecks. I should have known; this classic is full of delicious, old-fashioned recipes. 

Hil didn’t send a pastry recipe, but I quickly found one to adapt for my needs. I changed the filling only slightly, throwing in some blueberries from the farmer’s market. My mum often made this variation, and I almost like it more than the original. Yes, the blueberries do go soft, but I don’t mind in their case- perhaps because they bypass the mush stage and become almost a jam, holding the peaches together. 

Whatever the reason, this pie is worth making. Whether you’re like me and hate cooked fruit, or are (likely the case) more normal, just make it. I wouldn’t be surprised if it became your favourite pie, too.

peach and blueberry pie

  • Peach and Blueberry Pie
  • adapted from Food that Really Schmecks by Edna Staebler
  • makes one 10″ pie
  • 1 unbaked 10″ pie shell (plain or slightly sweet pastry) 
    4 Tbs. plain flour
    2/3 cup sugar
    1 tsp. lemon zest
    28g (2 Tbs.) unsalted butter, cut into 1cm pieces
    4 ripe peaches (or nectarines)
    1 cup of fresh blueberries
    3 Tbs. water
    2 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 1. Preheat your oven to 190°C/375°F. Mix together the flour, sugar and lemon zest in a small bowl. Using your fingers, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Set aside.

    2. To peel the peaches, bring a large pot of water to the boil, and prepare a large bowl of ice water. When the water boils, remove it from the heat. Cut a small X in the bottom of each peach. Drop them into the boiling water 30 seconds each, before removing to the ice water. Once cooled, the skin should easily pull away. Halve the peaches, remove the pits and set aside. 

    3. Spread half the crumbs in the bottom of the unbaked pie shell. Arrange the peach halves face-down in the shell, and scatter the blueberries between them. Cover with the remaining crumbs. 

    4. Mix together the water and lemon juice, and drizzle over the top of the pie. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until the crust is golden and the blueberries are bubbling. Cool before serving.
  • Slightly Sweet Pie Crust
  • adapted from Hilary‘s Pie-like Fruit Bake 
  • makes enough for one 10″ pie crust (bottom only)
  • 112g unsalted butter, cold and cut into 1cm pieces
    1 cup + 2 Tbs. all purpose flour, more for rolling
    1 Tbs. sugar
    1/2 tsp. salt
    1/4 cup ice-cold water 
  • 1. To make your pastry dough, mix together the flour, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Using your fingers, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add about half the water and work until it just comes together- you may need to add more water, but do so drop by drop. 

    2. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and leave in the fridge for at least 30 minutes, and at most 3 days.

    3. When you’re ready to make your pie shell, take the dough from the fridge and roll out on a well-floured surface. Press into a non-stick pie or tart tin, or else one that has been buttered and floured. If parts break, simply patch with a bit of dough. Put the unbaked pie shell in the fridge until you need it.

18 comments

  1. MH says:

    soooooo pretty!!

  2. Dana says:

    That is such a beautiful pie and those two fruits pair so beautifully together. You crust looks perfect!

  3. Natalie says:

    Wow, this pie is so lovely! The colors and pictures are great.

  4. Larissa says:

    My mom is making this as we speak…will report back :)

  5. Jessica says:

    I made your pie for desert today and it was a complete hit! Thanks for the recipe!

  6. Ele says:

    MH- Thanks, I think part of the reason I like this pie is because of how pretty it is, before you put it in the oven.

    Dana- My sister said the same thing about my pastry. I’m not that experienced with it, so it must be beginner’s luck!

    Natalie- Thanks, I love the colours too.

    Larissa- Eek, I’m scared. After years of having you cook for her, I know your mom’s standards must be high! :)

    Jessica- Thanks so much, glad you liked it!

  7. Halyna says:

    Peach & Blueberry Pie was super yummy! Made if for an impromptu dinner party. Everyone raved! Great recipes, Ele. Really enjoy reading what you write.

  8. Ele says:

    Halyna- Glad you all liked it, and thanks for the compliment! I really recommend the book this recipe is from (Food that Really Schmecks), it’s full of Canadian classics like this one!

  9. Amanda Mae says:

    beautiful photos!!

    I feel the same way about cooked fruit desserts! I don’t love them!

    But this looks beautiful – and if it tastes as beautiful as it looks – I’m willing to give her a try! I’m going to wait till it dips below the 90s here first… :)

  10. [...] London saw some lovely weather earlier in the month, and I took the opportunity to host a picnic to end all picnics. Taking advantage of the warmer temperatures, I also made a green bean salad, a strawberry-laden cake, and tried my hand at my mum’s famous Peach and Blueberry Pie. [...]

  11. Ele says:

    Amanda, you should try this! It made a convert of me, so much so that I’m even considering trying a fruit galette or similar next week! (*shock*) If you’re very wary about the mushy, softened fruit, just leave out the blueberries- that was the original recipe, after all. The peach halves on their own stay nice and semi-firm.

  12. [...] are subtle but concrete: I like fruit-based desserts if the fruit in question is raw, baked but structurally intact, or else cooked and mushed beyond recognition. This last stipulation hasn’t been illustrated [...]

  13. Vicki Randle says:

    Hi Ele,
    I am a friend of one of Halyna’s neighbours in Ottawa. My friend was at Halyna’s and John’s for dinner the night that she made this wonderful pie and just had to have the recipe. We visited a couple of weeks later and my friend, Barbara, made it and I loved it!!! Of course I had to know where she got the recipe. I have looked at a few more of your recipes and you have inspired me. We are having vegetarian friends for the weekend and as ‘meat eaters’ it is always a challenge to come up with something. I now have a reliable ‘go-to’ site. Thank you! I will let you know how I get on. Vicki

  14. Ele says:

    Hi Vicki, I’m so glad you liked this recipe, and my site! Do let me know how you get on with your guests- I don’t entertain/cook for guests very often so I’m always interested in those who do!

  15. [...] apricot halves, I immediately rejected the idea (if there’s anything I dislike more than cooked fruit, it’s canned fruit). Instead, I turned my attention to finding something else to [...]

  16. skim says:

    Ele! Peach season came early this summer in Ontario with all of the warm weather, thinking of you. Funny, we own Food That Shmecks but never saw this recipe; excited to try it out with the blueberry twist! xo

  17. Anne-Laure says:

    Hi Ele!
    I’m a silent but fervent reader of your sister’s blog and I just found out today about your blog! Your recipes looks delicious and I love your photos :) I can’t wait to give this tart a try (except that I can’t get my hand on blueberries here and that’s truly a shame! Loved them so much back in the day I was living in Montreal). Anyway, I was wondering if the crust don’t get too moist with all the juicy fruits?

  18. [...] I’m far too short to pull off), this is a trend I can get behind. I’m a big peach fan, especially of the Ontario freestone variety. I’m more used to enjoying the fruit in pies or [...]