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Cooking the Texas Book Fest: Stonewall Peach Crisp with Terry Thompson-Anderson

Addie Broyles

It’s been more than a decade since Fredericksburg-based author Terry Thompson-Anderson published “Texas on the Plate,” and after focusing on the Hill Country region for a 2008 food and wine book, Thompson-Anderson is back with another look at what makes Texas food so special.

Texas On The Table: People, Places, and Recipes Celebrating the Flavors of the Lone Star State” (University of Texas Press, $45) features the visual work of Houston photographer Sandy Wilson and covers countless notable folks in the state’s food community, from the established (Paula Lambert of the Mozzarella Company in Dallas and Tom Perini of the famed Buffalo Gap steakhouse) to the next generation, like the Avellan family who run the Austin-based Dos Lunas Cheese or Jordan Muraglia, the young chef who runs Vaudeville on Main Street in Fredericksburg.

The recipes, though considered advanced for most of us, take readers on a journey from sleek restaurant kitchens in the state’s biggest cities and into Thompson-Anderson’s more humble Hill Country kitchen, passing through the wineries, ranches and markets whose colorful owners are a big part of what makes the state’s cuisine so vibrant.

She’ll talk about those people, places and dishes, including, I hope, the turtle soup recipe that appears in the book, in a Texas Book Festival session at 3:30 p.m. Sunday in the Central Market Cooking Tent. The authors will be at a book signing at BookPeople on Oct. 30, with food and drinks from Richardson Farms, Iliana de la Vega of El Naranjo and winemaker David Kuhlken of Pedernales Cellars.

Stonewall Peach Crisp

Although I enjoy fresh peaches all summer, I also stock up our freezer around the end of July when the crop begins to dwindle. Then I can add a peach cobbler or crisp to my holiday menus using my stash of fresh frozen peaches. It adds a welcome taste of summer sun to the holiday table.

5 cups fresh peaches, peeled, pitted and sliced

1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

3 Tbsp. turbinado (raw) sugar

3 Tbsp. all-purpose flour

For the topping:

2 cups mini shredded wheat cereal

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

1/3 cup chopped pecans

1 1/2 sticks well-chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1 Tbsp. vanilla

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9-inch-by-13-inch baking dish with nonstick spray; set aside. Place the peaches in a medium-sized bowl; set aside. In a small bowl combine the cinnamon, turbinado sugar and flour. Toss to blend well, then pour the flour mixture into the peaches and toss to mix well, making sure all peaches are coated. Turn the peaches out into the prepared baking dish, smoothing the top evenly; set aside.

To make the topping, place the cereal in the work bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade and pulse until it is completely broken up into very small bits. Add remaining ingredients and pulse to blend, taking care to leave the butter in pea-sized bits.

Scatter the topping over the peaches, making sure it extends into the corners and covers the peaches. Bake in preheated oven for about 45 minutes, or until golden brown and bubbly. Cool for 30 minutes before serving. Top each serving with a scoop of good-quality vanilla ice cream for an over-the-top experience. Serves 6.

— From “Texas On The Table: People, Places, and Recipes Celebrating the Flavors of the Lone Star State” (University of Texas Press, $45) by Terry Thompson-Anderson