Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Secrets to a PERFECT Scratch PIE CRUST Every Time - 52 Cakes and Pies at Home

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Here's you a fancy French phrase... pâte brisée.  It sort of translates into Puff Pastry.  Like the stuff that cost a fortune (it;s just flour and utter), but is very difficult to make at home.

Well, this recipe uses the formula for a puff pastry, but it all gets smashed together (puff pastry is layers of flour and butter, this is a lump mix of flour and butter).  I also make mine in a food processor.  It is easy fast and most important easy.  If you do not have one, can be mixed by hand, but seriously, buy a food processor.  All the really cool cooks have one.

OK... First up is the recipe.  But keep scrolling down.  This is more than a recipe post, included is a photo essay of the techniques that go along in making a crust.

But first, my never fail butter crust recipe...

OK... Here's what I did...

Secrets to a Scratch  

  • 2-1/2 Cup All Purpose Flour
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 Cup (2 Sticks) Unsalted COLD Butter
  • 5-10 TBS COLD (iced) water
  • Non-stick spray (Like Pam)
Cooking Directions
  1. Add the flour, salt and sugar to the bowl of a food processor and process to mix.
  2. Prepare the next items, butter should be cold (prefer from freezer) and water in a cup with a couple of ice cubes to keep it cold, cold, cold.
  3. With the machine running, add butter 1 TBS at a time, count to three and add the next TBS of butter. Continue to process until dough resembles small pebbles like wet sand, only 5-10 seconds.
  4. With the machine still running, add the COLD COLD Water one TBS at a time. In just a few seconds a dough ball will begin to form. Stop the processor now.
  5. Prepare your "Rolling area", a place to form the flat circle of crust. This si simple, just a piece of cling wrap (Saran Wrap) laid out flat on a counter. It is important that the wrap be at least 4 inches wider than the pie plate. use an extra overlapping piece of wrap if needed. Then dump the dough ball and all crumbs from the processor onto the center of the cling wrap.
  6. Press the ball and crumbs together and form a flat ball. Press the ball and begin to flatten out into a circle. Add a top layer of cling wrap on top of the now flattened ball. Use a roller and begin rolling the dough into a flat circle. As the dough is flattened it may begin to separate. Just add some of the edges to cover the breaks and continue to roll out. Roll until the dough circle is 2 inches beyond the edge of the pie plate. Gently but firmly roll until crust is even thickness.
  7. Remove top layer of cling wrap and place pie plate on center of the dough circle.
  8. OK.... Here's the tricky part (first couple of times, once you get used to it, it becomes second nature easy)... lift each corner of the bottom cling wrap up to break the seal on the counter top. Now reach your hand under the cling wrap to the center of the pie plate (that is still resting on the center of the crust). Put your other hand on the top (the bottom) of the plate Lift up and QUICKLY flip everything so the pie plate is now on the bottom, the dough is centered on the plate and beginning to settle. There will be ripples of dough, but everything should be on the plate with some hangover all the way around.
  9. Trim the edges. With your thumbs, push the dough 1/8-inch above the edge of the mold, to make an even, rounded rim of dough around the inside circumference of the mold. You can then press a decorative edge around the rim of the pastry with the dull edge of a knife. Prick the bottom of the pastry with a fork at 1/2-inch intervals to prevent air bubbles from forming as you par-bake the crust.
  10. To par-bake, bake crust in a preheated 400 degree oven for 9-10 minutes, until crust just starts to darken in color. If you are going to bake the finished pie (Fruit pies, quiches, etc. you are ready to move on to the next step. If you are making a cold pie (like banana cream:, bake for an additional 5 minutes.
  11. Fill and bake (or chill) as directed for the pie of your choice! And when done... ENJOY!

And come back tomorrow for my thousand dollar Bacon Cheesecake Recipe!

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