Executive Pastry Chef Kayla May
Josephine, Nashville, TN
Memaw’s Peach Cobbler
“We all knew her as Memaw. The kids she kept knew her a Ms. McGrew. She was born in Clay County Arkansas in 1918. There’s so much I can’t tell you about her early life. She passed away my first week of college, and the questions I would ask her now I didn’t think to ask her back then. She was our favorite. She would cook my sister and me Jello for breakfast and help us hide it from our mother. (Looking back, I think my mother knew all along. But it was our secret, and I loved her for it.) Every summer we would visit, my siblings and cousins and me, and every summer we would help her pick peaches and blackberries and tomatoes. We would swim in the lake and dig in the dirt. Memaw knew how to grow, cook and preserve food. I figured if she knew how to do all that, there probably wasn’t much she didn’t know how to do. Her cellar where she stored all of her canned food was a favorite hiding spot when we played hide-and-go-seek. She made the best peach cobbler. All of us kids thought so anyway. While this may not be the exact recipe she used (after all, she never measured anything, she just knew the right amount to put in), it is inspired by her. It was created from the memory of eating barefoot on the porch, our hair still wet from swimming in the lake. It tasted like summer, and to me it still does.”
- 6 peaches, peeled, pitted and roughly chopped
- Juice of 1 lemon
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons potato starch or cornstarch
- ⅛ tsp ground ginger
- ⅛ tsp ground cinnamon
- ⅛ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp splashes angostura bitters
- Pie dough, chilled and sheeted to 1/16” thick
- Combine all ingredients and let juices marinate for 10 minutes.
- Strain out juice, reserve peaches.
- Cook juice over medium heat till thickened (stirring constantly).
- Allow juice mixture to cool slightly, then fold back into peaches.
- Cool completely before assembling. The filling will keep a few days in the fridge if you want to work ahead.
- Fill a deep pie pan with chilled peach filling.
- Top with pie dough, trim as needed and press pie dough to the edge of dish to seal.
- Chill for 1 hour to let pie dough harden.
- Brush with water and sprinkle with granulated sugar.
- Load into a 400F oven and immediately lower to 375F.
- Bake about 30-40 minutes until pie dough is golden and filling is bubbling (If the pie dough darkens too quickly you can lower to 350F or cover it with aluminum foil and continue baking.)
- Allow to cool slightly.
- Serve with your favorite ice cream.