A CookBook Recipes & Other Stuff or How to Keep the Kids from Developing Beriberi After They've Moved Away From Home

Monday, July 24, 2006

Pie Crust - The Anti-Bread

Pie crust has been the bane of my life as a cook - I can never make it come out the way I like. So I researched a bit, and found that it must be because I am really good at making bread ...

It turns out bread is quite the opposite of pie crust (you can see my recipe for blueberry muffins for a discussion of gluten). Pie crust needs as little gluten formation as possible - therefore it needs soft flour and acid and sugar ...

So now that I am well-informed - I'll attempt pie crust one more time. Hopefully this time I'll get it right - ot I'll retire as a pie crust maker and leave it all to Mrs. Smith ...

1.5 cups cake flour

1.5 cups all purpose flour

2 teaspoons sugar

1 teaspoon salt

0.25 teaspoons baking powder

1 stick butter

10 tablespoons shortening

egg yolk

2 teaspoons white vinegar

3 ice cubes

0.5 cups cold water

Measure butter and shortening and freeze for 10 minutes

Put Flours, sugar, salt and baking powder in a bowl and mix.

Grate half the shortening and butter into the flour and mix

Grate the other half and mix until it looks like little peas (Do Not Overmix!)

Mix egg yolk and vinegar together, add ice cubes and water - let this chill a bit

Sprinkle 4 - 5 tablespoons of egg/water/vinegar stuff over the flour, mixing with a fork

When it holds together - not too wet - wrap in plastic and chill in fridge - or freeze til later

Remove from fridge (another useless instruction - like you're really going to roll it out in the fridge) and divide in half and roll out 2 circles on a floured surface.

Fold in half and place in a pie pan - the dough should be at least 1.5 - 2 inches larger around than the pan. Trim, tuck top crust under bottom crust, flute, and fill and cook!

Note to Self: Yeah!!! this recipe is exactly what I was hoping it would be ... flaky and crumbly - but it doesn't need the baking powder. The recipe makes enough for a two crust pie. The freezing of the shortening and butter and grating them alternately works perfectly - I am now a pie maker ...


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