When I first made this pie crust, I didn’t know the effect it would have. Weren’t all pie crusts the same?
I guess I really didn’t know that pie crust could be something people would rave about, would be something that people would bob through a crowd in a party to find the person who made it.
But, I was wrong. It’s that good. You have to be delicate with a couple things while making it, but when you do…
My husband is happy, he is a BIG pie person. Loves pie more than cake and wanted it at the wedding in place of it.
And although I am not a details person, there are a couple details you gotta stick to in order to get the science of fat distribution just right. You will be glad you did. Especially the temperature of the fats, and how you work the dough, those are key.
Recipe for Perfect Pie Crust
(A Double Pie Crust; meaning crust for the top and bottom of a pie. If you want it open air, no crust on top, cut the recipe in half)
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (White, or pastery is better than whole wheat for pie)
1 1/5 sticks cold, unsalted butter that is cut into small cubes (About 1/2 inch)
1/4 cup cold vegetable shortening
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 to 8 tablespoons of ice water
-Use a pastry blender (which looks like this:)
or fingertips to blend the flour, butter, shortening and salt in a bowl until it is corse and looking like pea shaped balls. You are getting all that cold fat mixed around, but NOT COMPLETELY, it’s still in small, pea sized pockets, which is good.
-Get a little cup of ice water, and from it measure 5 tablespoons of it into your flour/butter mixture and gently stir with a fork.
-squeeze a small handful of the dough to test it; if it falls apart, add more ice water, 1/2 tablespoon at a time, stirring until incorporated. Don’t over blend or overwork the dough or it will be tough, be gentle with it until it holds together for the squeeze test.
-Put dough onto a big cutting board or similar surface that is very lightly floured and divide it into 8 portions of similar size. Use the heal of your hand to smear and spread it out, once or twice, to distribute the fat (the fat is the KEY to the raving at the end, you’re making it do what you want right now–work it!)
-pull all the pieces together for a reunion, and divide once more into two even-ish portions. If it’s sticky, dust lightly with flour. Wrap both pieces of dough with plastic wrap , and flatten a bit so they look like fat cookies. Put in refrigerator or at least one hour to chill. (If you are making this for guests or a special event, you can make dough ahead and chill up to two days)
-After it has chilled, it’s ready! Roll out one, slow and steady and get it even. Lay across a pie pan and let gravity start to bring it down to fill the pan at first. push the sides in and try to fill it without pushing it down into the corners as much as possible.
-Fill your pie with whatever filling you like!
-Roll out pie top, cover your pie, and press along the edges to bind. Use a knife and cut pie at an angel, handle pointing away from the pan as you go.
-Bake and Serve
If you try it, you will have to let me know what you think of it! See, I CAN bake, and bake something AMAZING after all!