Monday, April 4, 2011

Basic Pie Crust

I started making pies when I was pretty young. My grandma gave me a rolling pin and a recipe book and I have loved it ever since. Handling your dough is the most important part of getting a great pie crust. If you like flaky then try this.

Using a pastry blender cut the shortening it's in small pieces. You can see a close up below. I just recently got this pasty blender. You don't need one. Just use a fork to cut the shortening with the prongs. You can see above I have a cup full of water and ice. This will give you plenty of water to work with and it will be super cold from the ice.

Pour your ice water in a little at a time and using your hands lightly mix the dough with your fingers. Try not to press it or knead it too much.
Add water until all the dough stays together. If you add too much and it's sticky add a little more flour.
This recipe makes enough dough for a bottom and top crust. You will want to separate your dough into two equal pieces. Place each piece on a sheet of plastic wrap.
I am not sure if you can see in this picture but you should see ribbons of shortening throughout your dough. Flaky crust comes from that fat not totally mixed into the dough. Refrigerate about 1/2 hour before rolling out and baking.

Basic Pie Crust

2 cups flour, sifted
1 tsp salt
1 cup shortening
1/4 cup ice water (you will probably need a little more than that)

Sift flour, then measure. Mix flour and salt together. Cut in shortening until crumbly. Stir in ice water with hands until dough holds together. Form two balls. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1/2 hour before rolling out.

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