07 January 2009

Pie Crust Tips

As you can see from this picture, Mr. Cow endorses this pie in spite of having received no remuneration for the cream. I also endorse the pie in spite of having received ample calories for my poor fluffy post-holiday thighs.

I am not allowed to share this chocolate cream pie recipe on the internet or anywhere else. However, the kind person who made the pie did give a few helpful hints for me as I made the crust that I thought I would share.

The basic recipe for a single pie crust involves these ingredients:

1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup shortening (plus a couple tablespoons)
very very cold water

1. Mix the flour and salt together.
2. Use a pastry blender or knives to blend the shortening into pea size balls. It is important not to over blend because the flour on the outside of the balls is what creates the flakes.
3. Drop water onto the mix a tablespoon at a time and mix with a fork. The water needs to be very very cold because if it is too warm, the shortening will melt and stick to everything the light touches while you are trying to roll the stuff out.
4. When the pastry is mostly moistened, form it into a ball (touching as little as possible with your hands) and roll it out. Roll it onto the rolling pin to transfer to the pie plate.
5. Bake as pie directs, or if you are just making a shell prick it all over with a fork, and bake at 450 until it is toasty brown. (Check first at 8 minutes, then every 3 to 5 until your heart tells you it is time.) This will give the crust a nice toasty flavor.

I suppose most people already know how to make pie crust. I just wanted to post that picture because it looks like the cow is reaching for it but can't quite escape his childrens book prison. Poor exploited thing.


Queen Elizabeth said...

I have never made a pie crust. I have made a tart crust. There probably isn't a big difference but there is in my whacked-out brain somehow. I love purchasing frozen pie crusts.

msjvd said...

Ok, the only thing that the "kind person" told you was to bake your crust a bit longer. Otherwise, it was a perfectly lovely pie crust.

It needs to be lightly browned. That allowed the crust to be flaky, and a bit more "nutlike" in flavor. It also made it come out of that cute little tart pan you used.

And that picture didn't do the pie justice. YOU made a gorgeous pie.

Lori said...

I like to use lard in my pie crusts. Someone somewhere told me that it made a flakier crust. But I haven't experimented to find out if this is true. Maybe I should make some pies this weekend and find out.

Jen said...

We would certainly be able to help you taste test the pies to judge crusts if you need, Lori.

msjvd said...

It supposedly makes the pie crust flakier, but it also adds saturated fat (to be avoided if anyone in your family has a cholesterol or heart problem) and... it adds a slightly different flavor. Some like it. Some do not.

So Jennifer (and everybody else) check this out:


laceeJ said...

no, i have never made pie crust, i like to go to Croshaw's in St. George and order their pies. Lemon sour cream is the bomb!

Dansie Family said...

i wanted to tell you after i devoured the piece you brought over how wonderful the crust was. it was so nice and flaky and not tough. thanks for the tips. i have kind of given up on crusts for a while and use the pillsbury ones. but i will try again.