3 cups all-purpose flour
/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 tablespoon sugar
2/3 cup vegetable shortening
3/4 cold water
1 egg (as an egg wash)
3 large peaches, skins peeled, diced into small pieces
1-1/2 tablespoons apricot preserves
1 tablespoon butter
1-2 tablespoons almond pieces, finely chopped
Dash of cinnamon, optional
1 teaspoon lemon juice
FOR THE GLAZE
1 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1-2 drops of almond extract, optional
Add the flour to a large bowl along with the salt and sugar and sift together.
Add the shortening to the dry ingredients in small pieces. With your fingers or a pastry blender, mix the ingredients together. Add the water to the dough, a little at a time, and continue to mix until it looks like a course meal and there are several pea-sized clumps that form.
Continue to mix the dough until it’s soft enough to form a dough ball.
Split the dough into two equal portions and form them into 1-inch-thick disks. Wrap the disks in plastic wrap and refrigerate them for about an hour.
To easily peel the skins off the peaches, first cut a slit in the base of each peach. Place peaches in boiling water (enough to cover the peaches) for about 30 seconds. Remove the peaches using a slotted spoon, and place them in ice water. Allow them to sit for a few minutes.
Remove the peaches from the water and begin to peel away the skin from where you slit them. The skin should peel right off.
Dice the peaches and put them in a medium bowl. Add 1 tablespoon butter and the apricot preserves to a microwave-safe container and heat for about 20 seconds, or until the preserves have melted. Mix to combine.
Add the preserve mixture, along with the almonds and dash of cinnamon (if using), to the peaches. Mix well to coat. Sprinkle lemon juice over the mixture and set it aside.
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F., and line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.
Leave one disk of dough in the refrigerator, working with them individually.
Lightly flour your work surface and the top of the dough, too.
Roll out the dough to form a rectangle shaped about 12x9 inches, and 1/8-inch thick.
Use the back of a butter knife to score away the edges of the dough to form straight edges (keep the scraps for later), then again to divide the dough into even-numbered squares or rectangles. You’ll use two squares/rectangles to form one “pop tart.”
Add the egg to a small bowl and beat it with a fork. Brush half of the squares/rectangles with the egg, and make sure to get the edges.
Spoon one heaping tablespoon of the peach mixture into the center of each brushed square/rectangle. Spread it out slightly, but only to about half an inch from the edges.
Place a corresponding square/rectangle over the one with the filling and line up the edges and lightly press it down, especially at the edges.
Use a fork to crimp the edges all the way around each square/rectangle to seal the dough together, then prick the tops of each a few times. Brush the edges with the egg.
Place the “pop tarts” on the lined baking sheets and place in the freezer as you work with the next batch of dough.
Bake for 25-35 minutes or until the “pop tarts” begin to turn golden.
When finished baking, transfer to a cooling rack. When they’re completely cool, drizzle with the glaze (mix the confectioners’ sugar with the milk and almond extract, if using, and blend until smooth).