Peach Slab Pie

5 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for work surface
1 teaspoon fine salt
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar, divided
2 cups (4 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
2/3 cup ice water (plus up to 1/2 cup more for pulsing)
3 3/4 pounds peaches, thinly sliced (12 cups)
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest plus 2 tablespoons lemon juice

In a food processor, pulse flour, salt, and 2 tablespoons sugar until combined. Add butter.
Pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal, with a few pea-size pieces of butter remaining. Then, with machine running, add 2/3 cup ice water.

Pulse until dough is crumbly but holds together when squeezed (if necessary, add up to 1/2 cup ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time). Do not overmix.

Divide dough into 2 disks and wrap each tightly in plastic. Refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour (or up to overnight).

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a large bowl, toss together peaches, 3/4 cup sugar, cornstarch, lemon zest and lemon juice.

Lightly flour a work surface and rolling pin. Roll out 1 disk dough to a 12-by-16-inch rectangle. Roll dough over rolling pin; carefully unroll into a 10-by-14-by-1-inch rimmed jelly-roll pan. Press gently to fit into pan.

Pour in peach filling, then lightly brush edges of dough with water. On floured surface, roll out remaining disk to an 11-by-15-inch rectangle. Roll dough over rolling pin and carefully unroll over filling.

Press along moistened edges to seal. Fold under any overhang, tucking it into the pan. With your fingers, crimp edges.

With a paring knife, cut slits on top to vent. Place pie in oven, then reduce heat to 375 degrees. Bake until crust is golden and juices are bubbling, 45 to 50 minutes. Let cool on a wire rack 1 hour. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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Double Chocolate Spice Cookies

1 cup all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled)
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
6 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
10 ounces semisweet chocolate chips (scant 1 2/3 cups)
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs, room temperature
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees, with racks in upper and lower thirds. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, salt, pepper, and baking soda; set aside.

Place unsweetened chocolate, 1 cup semisweet chips, and butter in a medium heatproof bowl set over (not in) a pan of simmering water. Cook until chocolate begins to melt, about 5 minutes. Stir until chocolate is completely melted and mixture is smooth. Remove from heat and let cool 3 minutes.

Add sugars and, with a rubber spatula, stir until sugars dissolve, about 4 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, stirring well after each addition. Stir in vanilla. With spatula, fold in flour mixture just until flour is absorbed. Fold in remaining semisweet chocolate chips.
Scoop dough by level 1/4-cupfuls onto baking sheets, 3 inches apart. Bake until cookies are set at edges but still soft in center, 11 minutes (do not overbake), rotating sheets halfway through.

Let cookies cool on sheets on wire racks, 10 minutes, then transfer to racks to cool completely, 30 minutes. (Store cookies in an airtight container, up to 2 days.)

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Spice-Crusted Grilled Hanger Steak

2 tablespoons light-brown sugar
2 tablespoons coriander seeds
2 tablespoons fennel seeds
1 large shallot, finely chopped
2 tablespoons minced jalapeno
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves
5 garlic cloves, minced
3 pounds hanger steak
Coarse salt and ground pepper
Steak sauce, horseradish sauce, or chimichurri, for serving

Sprinkle sugar over coriander and fennel seeds; roughly chop (or process spices in a spice grinder and add sugar in next step). Transfer to a small bowl with shallot, jalapeno, cilantro, and garlic. Pat steak dry and rub all over with spice mixture.

Heat a grill to high. Clean and lightly oil hot grill. Season steaks all over with salt and pepper. Grill steaks, 8 minutes per side for medium-rare, flipping once. Transfer steaks to a plate and let rest 10 minutes. Thinly slice against the grain and serve with steak sauce, horseradish sauce, or chimichurri.

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Herbed Potato Salad with Bacon and Scallions

2 pounds red creamer potatoes, scrubbed and cut into eighths
3 garlic cloves, halved
1 sprig rosemary
3 sprigs parsley, plus 1 tablespoon coarsely chopped leaves
2 sprigs thyme
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
Coarse salt and ground pepper
Red-pepper flakes
6 ounces slab bacon, sliced lengthwise into 1/4-inch pieces
6 scallions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4 1/2 teaspoons red-wine vinegar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a medium pot, cover potatoes with 6 cups water. Add garlic, rosemary, parsley, and thyme sprigs, peppercorns, 1 tablespoon salt, and pinch of red-pepper flakes. Bring to a boil over high. Reduce heat and simmer until potatoes are tender but not mushy, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from heat and let potatoes cool in cooking liquid, about 3 hours.

Meanwhile, place bacon on a baking sheet and cook until crisp, about 20 minutes. When cool enough to handle, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch pieces.

Reserve 1/4 cup potato cooking liquid; drain potatoes and discard herb stems. In a large bowl, combine potatoes, bacon, and scallions.

In a small bowl, whisk together reserved cooking liquid, oil, vinegar, chopped parsley, 1 1/4 teaspoons salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Pour dressing over potatoes and toss to combine. Serve at room temperature (or refrigerate, up to overnight).

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Granny Foster’s Sunday Fried Chicken

1 whole chicken (3 1/2 to 4 pounds), cut into 10 pieces
Coarse salt and ground pepper
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar
2 bay leaves
2 cups buttermilk, shaken
2 cups all-purpose flour
Cayenne pepper
3 cups vegetable shortening or canola oil

Place chicken in a large bowl and cover with cold water. Add 2 tablespoons salt, the sugar, vinegar, and bay leaves and stir until salt and sugar dissolve. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Place buttermilk in a large, shallow bowl. Lift chicken from brine and transfer to buttermilk. In another large, shallow bowl or zip-top bag, stir or shake together flour, 1 tablespoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and pinch of cayenne to combine.

Line a platter with a brown paper bag and place near stove. In a large cast-iron skillet, heat shortening over medium-high until a deep-fry thermometer reads 350 degrees to 375 degrees (a small cube of bread should brown in less than 1 minute). Oil should be deep enough to come halfway up sides of chicken; the level will rise slightly when chicken is added. Beginning with larger pieces, lift chicken from buttermilk, letting excess drip off, and dredge or shake in flour mixture until evenly coated. Shake off excess.

Working in batches, add chicken, skin side down, to pan (do not crowd pan); reduce heat to medium. Fry until golden brown on both sides and juices run clear when thigh is pierced with a knife (an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of thigh, avoiding bone, should read 165 degrees), 10 to 12 minutes per side.

Transfer chicken to platter to drain. Season with salt and pepper and let sit 10 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

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Grilled Pork Tacos al Pastor

1 package (3 1/2 ounces) achiote paste
3 canned chipotle chiles in adobo sauce, plus 1/4 cup sauce
1/4 cup vegetable oil, plus more for grill
1 1/2 pounds pork shoulder, sliced 1/4 inch thick
1 medium red onion, sliced into 1/4-inch rounds
Coarse salt
1/4 medium pineapple (about 6 ounces), peeled and sliced into 1/4-inch rounds
24 corn tortillas, warmed
Smoky Chipotle Salsa

In a blender, combine achiote, chiles and sauce, 1/4 cup oil, and 3/4 cup water; blend until smooth, about 5 seconds. Use one-third the marinade to coat pork all over (refrigerate or freeze remaining marinade to use on other meat or fish). Cover pork and refrigerate 1 hour.

Set up a grill for indirect cooking over medium-high. Clean and lightly oil hot grill. Brush onion slices with oil and season with salt. Arrange in a single layer over hot side of grill. Cook until grill marks are dark brown on both sides, 3 to 5 minutes per side, flipping once. Move to cool side of grill and cook until soft, 5 to 8 minutes. Repeat with pineapple. In batches, grill pork over direct heat, about 1 minute per side.

Transfer pork to a cutting board; chop into 1/4- to 1/2-inch pieces. Add to a skillet set on grill to keep warm. Chop onion and pineapple into small pieces, add to skillet, and toss. Season with salt. Serve pork mixture with tortillas and salsa.

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Chickpea, Tomato, and Feta Salad

1 (15.5 oz) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 pint grape tomatoes, halved
2 oz crumbled feta
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
1/2 cucumber, quartered and chopped
salt and pepper to taste

Mix all in a medium bowl.  Serves 4


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