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Want to see pie in the sky? Look up: Hot sun, dry days and late-night rains give us so much great fruit, you can practically see the pies parading through the clouds.
Summer was made for pie. When the weather is warm, you can just about slice the calendar into pie shapes: April strawberries, July peaches, the first appearance of apples in August.
And how about another old saying, easy as pie? When you compare making a pie to making a cake, with all its layers and frostings, pie is definitely simpler. Once you learn the knack for pie crusts, they don't take much work. (OK, OK _ it's even faster if you use a refrigerated pie crust. Or you can make your own pie crusts in advance, roll them out and freeze them. We'll turn our backs and let you deal with your own conscience on that issue.)
Is there any way to make summer pies even better? You bet: Combinations. Each fruit of summer seems to have a natural companion in flavors, something you can add to make the fruit taste even better. Peach pie is good. Peach pie with a hint of almond? That tugs at the skirt of greatness.
With that in mind, we went into the kitchen in search of combinations that unlock the flavors of fruit pies. We found those two old buddies, strawberry and rhubarb. We dressed blueberries with lemon. We introduced raspberry to orange and let them dance around on our tongues. We even found a recipe that let cheddar cheese cozy right up to apples. And peach with almond? Wouldn't miss it.
Those should be enough to keep us baking right through summer. And then comes pumpkin. And pecan.
It's enough to make a baker pie-eyed.
Peach Almond Custard Pie
From "Thymes Remembered" (The Junior League of Tallahassee, 1988). Perhaps …