Peach and Custard Meringue Pie
250g all butter shortcrust pastry
Sweet Shortcrust Pastry Recipe (adapted from Jamie Oliver)
250g plain flour/cake flour, plus extra for dusting
50g icing sugar, sifted
125g unsalted butter, cold and cut into small cubes
1 Free-range egg, beaten
a splash of milk
Place the flour and icing sugar in a food processor and pulse to mix. Add the cold butter cubes and pulse until it resembles course sea sand. Pour in the beaten egg and pulse until evenly combined. Splash in a little milk until the dough comes together to form a ball. Don't work the pastry too much at this stage or it will become elastic and chewy, not crumbly and short. Flour your work surface and place the dough on top. Pat it into a flat round, flour it lightly, wrap it in plastic wrap and put it in the fridge to rest for at least half an hour.
Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface until large enough to line a medium-sized tart tin. Trim the excess pastry from around the edge, then line the pastry with baking paper, fill with baking beans or rice and chill for 15 mins.
Heat oven to 180’c. Bake the pastry for 15 mins, then carefully lift out the baking paper and beans, and bake for 5 mins more or until biscuity.
2 peaches, peeled and diced into small pieces
400 ml cream
200 ml full cream milk
3/4 cup castor sugar
1 vanilla bean, seeds
3 egg yolks
½ cup caramel treat/ dulce de leche (optional)
Puree the diced peaches until smooth and then cook the peaches on a medium heat until the peach puree has reduced by half, about 5 minutes.
Place the cream, milk, half of the sugar and vanilla bean in a medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, egg yolks and rest of the sugar. Temper the hot milk mixture into the eggs while whisking. Strain the custard through a fine sieve and let it cool in an ice bath slightly.
Pour a layer of caramel into the prepared pastry base (optional), followed by a layer of the peach puree. Top with custard and bake at 160’c for about 40 minutes or until the center is set. Let the pie cool completely.
3 large egg whites
1 1/2 cup (240g) Icing Sugar
Once ready to serve, make the Swiss meringue by placing the egg whites into a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water and lightly whisking until the egg whites reach soft peak stage. Slowly add the sugar and whisk until it has all dissolved and the mixture is warm to the touch. Tip - I take some of the meringue and rub it between my fingers to feel if all the sugar granules have dissolved. If there are no grains of sugar, the mixture is ready. Remove the bowl from the heat and using an electric mixer whisk for 5-10 minutes or until the meringue forms stiff peaks. Spread the meringue on top of the pie and use a kitchen blowtorch to toast it.