Make Ahead

Cardamom Peach Pie Filling

August 23, 2011
2 Ratings
  • Serves 1 quart or 1 9" pie or one 9x9 crisp
Author Notes

Every summer I put up about six quarts of this pie filling, a slight variation on my great-grandmother's recipe. It's just perfect in a one crust, two crust, lattice crust, or crumble topped pie. In fact, when I'm desperately wanting warm peachy wonderfulness in January, I'll pour the filling into a buttered baking dish and make a crisp topping or top with buttermilk biscuits. If you're not the preserving type, put the filling in a pie and bake it right away. That just might convince you to start canning. - MrsWheelbarrow —MrsWheelbarrow

Test Kitchen Notes

It's a great week when I get to test one of Mrs. Wheelbarrow's recipes! They’re always precise, well-written, and foolproof. While I waited for the water to boil to blanch the skins, I threw together a quick pastry crust using Merrill's crust recipe for the peach tart smackdown and let it rest in the fridge while I prepped the peaches and made the filling. The filling recipe comes together very quickly once the peaches are prepped. Tasting notes from six friends: "Wonderful"; "like an apple pie, but with peaches"; "not too sweet - definitely an adult peach pie"; "summer in my mouth". The warm spiciness is wonderful, but cinnamon was a tad more dominant than the cardamom. That could have been the spices I used, Saigon cinnamon can be strong. Next time, I will up the amount of cardamom -- and it does make a difference to grind the cardamom seeds fresh as the recipe suggests. Definitely a keeper. - Burnt Offerings —Burnt Offerings

What You'll Need
  • 4 cups peeled, pitted, sliced or chunked ripe peaches (about 5 lbs.)
  • Fruit fresh, citric acid, or additional lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/8 teaspoon cloves, ground
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger or galangal
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon cardamom*
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  1. Prepare a large bowl of cold water and acidulate (love that word) with 2 T fruit fresh or citric acid, or the juice of two lemons. If you are canning, this is a good time to prepare and start your boiling water bath, and sterilize quart jars, lids and rings.
  2. Get a big pot of water boiling. Dip the peaches into the water for 30-60 seconds - depending on their size and how ripe they are. You do not want to cook them. Plunge the peaches into the bowl of cold water.
  3. When all the peaches are blanched, make an X in the bottom and remove the peel in four easy pieces. Pit and then slice, or cut into chunks, depending on what you prefer in your pie. I usually make a couple of quarts with smaller chunks for hand pies and a couple of quarts with big slices for deep dish lattice pies.
  4. In a heavy pot, like a Le Creuset, place the peaches and everything else except the cornstarch and water. Bring to a boil.
  5. Mix the cornstarch with the water to make a slurry. Add to the boiling peach mixture, bring back to a boil for one minute.
  6. Funnel the mixture into quart jars, leaving 1" headspace, bubble the filling, add lids and rings and process in a boiling water bath for 30 minutes.
  7. Your jars of peachy wonderfulness will last on the shelf for one year (supposedly. mine have never lasted that long.)
  8. *Cardamom - I prefer to use the green pods, crush and remove the seeds and the crush the seeds before measuring. It makes for pretty flecks through the filling and the flavor is so much more dramatic.
  9. Note: Some canners prefer to use ClearJel instead of cornstarch. Follow the instructions on the ClearJel package.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • nannydeb
  • Burnt Offerings
    Burnt Offerings
  • lapadia
  • lorigoldsby
  • lastnightsdinner
My new book, PIE SQUARED. Irresistibly Easy Sweet & Savory Slab Pies is available for preorder and on shelves October, 2018.

19 Reviews

KellyMac June 21, 2014
Hello, this recipe sounds delicious! I just ordered a canner but, I won't have it for another 5 days. Can I make this now - since my peaches are at their prime, and keep in the fridge and can on Thursday?
MrsWheelbarrow June 21, 2014
Hi Kelly, Peel and slice the peaches, place in acidulated water (lemon juice will keep them from browning), then drain and pop in a ziplock bag and freeze. Make the recipe with the frozen pieces when you're ready to can.
KellyMac June 21, 2014
Thank you for such a quick reply! Do I thaw the peaches first or throw them in frozen?
MrsWheelbarrow June 21, 2014
Just toss them in frozen. It may take some time for the mixture to come to a boil, but that won't hurt the final product.
nannydeb June 15, 2014
I made this for Father's day today and it was THE BEST pie I've ever eaten! I think I'll can some too while Texas peaches are still around. Thanks for sharing your recipe!
MrsWheelbarrow June 15, 2014
That's so nice to hear! Thank you so much for posting.
devendra September 16, 2011
Also, has anyone tried freezing as Jestei asked in the questions section? If so, did the frozen/thawed fruit express a lot of liquid, and was the starch in the recipe enough to take care of it?
devendra September 16, 2011
Delicious, delicious, delicious. My guests were beside themselves with this one. Grinding/grating the spices yourself is a must if you really want that bright pop. After the recommended 5 lb of fruit gave me waaaaay more than 4 C chopped, I went with the 4 cups. Next time I will go with 6 C as the pie (in a standard 9" pan) was a little flat - I just like pies a little higher. Probably won't need to adjust the spices etc very much as they are strong (in a good way) and the completed filling is quite juicy (in a luxurious way).
Than you -barrow, this is a keeper.
Burnt O. September 1, 2011
I am SO excited to be making this! May attempt a lattice pie for Labor Day to do it justice.
MrsWheelbarrow September 1, 2011
Hooray! I'm so glad you're testing it Linda! Please let me know how it comes out
Burnt O. September 1, 2011
Our Farmer's Market may be compromised by the Grand Prix this weekend. I think this recipe deserves the best, so I may head out Sunday afternoon to pick some peaches at an orchard up north in PA myself. Will post photos.
MrsWheelbarrow September 1, 2011
I was thinking of going to the B'more market this weekend, until I read about the grand prix.
Burnt O. September 1, 2011
NO - don't come anywhere near Baltimore this weekend unless it's on public transportation! The Grand Prix caused epic gridlock traffic today - and will again until it's over. I feel really badly for the Famers and vendors - that's 2 weekends in a row in the peak of summer harvest when they can't get their produce to market, or people can't get to them.
lapadia August 24, 2011
Delicious, thanks for sharing your recipe!!
MrsWheelbarrow August 24, 2011
My pleasure!
lorigoldsby August 23, 2011
MrsW...I may just can this summer--I think these would make divine gifts for the holiday! and I LOVE cardamon. i mentioned this recipe in my DUMP cake directions--hope you don't mind the cross reference!
MrsWheelbarrow August 23, 2011
Totally flattered! Love the DUMP cake!
lastnightsdinner August 23, 2011
This is just what I've been looking for :) Thanks, Cathy!
MrsWheelbarrow August 23, 2011
You're welcome, Jen! The peaches this year have been so good, haven't they? (PS One of my favorite market vendors slices and peels a quart of peaches, tosses them with 1/4 c sugar and a tsp of Fruit Fresh, and freezes the mixture in bags. When you take them out of the freezer, just let them slightly defrost - it's like a peachy popsicle.)