Peach and Custard Meringue Pie

Why, hello my peach…

peach and custard meringue pie

So sweet, so delicious and…. one of my favorite fruits!

They remind me of growing up spending the hottest days of the summer season in Cape Town with my grandparents. 

Sweltering days called for sweet, juicy, dripping-down-your-arm-and-chin peaches. They always made sure the fruit bowl was bulging with seasonal stone fruit from peaches to nectarines to puckery plums. My preference and fuzzy favourite - peaches. Refreshing my mood and mouth and imprinting a memory that will last a lifetime. 

peach and custard meringue

Back to reality - which means me rushing home from work to catch the last rays of the day, as winter draws near, to quickly shoot this glorious peach custard meringue pie.  Think of this creation as the last taste of summer to welcome the winter and all its comforting goodness.

Tip: This is going to sound crazy but if you don’t feel like making the peach puree, peaches are out of season or you’d like to go a little faster through the recipe, you can use peach baby food. It has a delicious peach flavour and is the right consistency for adding into the custard.

meringue pie

_ Peach and Custard Meringue Pie

Ingredients

Peach and Custard Meringue Pie

 

250g all butter shortcrust pastry

or 

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. 

 

Peach Custard

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 eggs

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.

 

Swiss Meringue

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.

April 12.