Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Pie Time

Yesterday, my son asked for a pie. I'm not a fan of store-bought crust. It took awhile, but I've perfected a recipe that's no-fail. Here's the recipe, some pics, and freezer tips.

Perfect Pie Crust

Refrigerator time: 30 min
Cooking time: 60 min
Resting time: 60 min
Total time: 2 hr 50 min

What You Need:
2 C flour
1 tsp salt
6 3/4 Tbsp butter (ice cold)
6 3/4 Tbsp shortening (ice cold)
1/2 C water (ice cold)

What You Use:
measuring Cups and Spoons
mixing bowl
pastry blender
large cutting board
rolling pin
9" pie plate
plastic wrap
aluminum foil or Glad Press n' Seal

What You Do:
1. In a medium bowl, place flour and salt. (Sometimes I substitute 1 C of white flour for 1 C of whole wheat flour, just to squeeze in nutrition.)

2. Cut ice cold squares of butter and shortening into salt and flour until looks like small pearls. Using butter and shortening gives you both a tender and a flaky crust. The butter and shortening melt at different rates in the oven, which gives you the optimal texture.

3. Add water sparingly until it's moist enough to shape into a ball. I stir with a dinner knife. When the dough comes together, turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Quickly and gently, shape dough into a flat disk.

4. Place disk of dough in plastic wrap. Immediately place in fridge. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before making your pie.

5. To roll: Roll out quickly on a lightly floured surface. The key is to move 

 quickly so the dough stays cold. If starts to warm, place back in the fridge.

6. For a crisper crust, place pie in the fridge until just before baking.

This is how mix should look just before adding water.

Disk of dough in the fridge.

See the yellow and white flecks?
Those are bits of butter and shortening.

This is how your rolled dough should look.
(This dough has brown flecks because
I used some whole wheat flour.)

Tasty pie straight from the oven.

Tasty, flaky piece of pie.

Strawberry Pie:

I cheated. I used a can of strawberry pie filling. Then I added some brown sugar and a couple tablespoons of butter. Covered it. Docked the top to allow steam to escape. It baked for 60 min in a 400 degree oven. It sat for 2 hours before we cut into it. With a spritz of whipped cream... YUM!

Freezer Tips:

I tend to double, triple, and quadruple recipes so I can put some in the freezer. Pie crust is very freezer friendly. Roll out the dough, gently cover the pie pan with it, fold the top crust in plastic wrap and place in the center of the pie crust-covered pie plate. Wrap it all with plastic wrap, covered with a layer of foil, label, and freeze. It'll be ready whenever you want a homemade dessert or dinner pie.

Pie dough, rolled and packaged.

Freezer ready.

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