Master THE Perfect Pie Crust

July 24, 2015 | By | Reply More

perfect pie crust

I haven’t yet mastered pretty edges, but the crust IS perfect!

It’s fruit pie time! PIE! I love it for summer desserts and maybe even the occasional breakfast treat. Pies are so versatile that you can enjoy them with whatever fruit is in season. Believe it or not, pies can also be a very convenient, make-ahead dessert option for summer events and entertaining.

But, why does making a pie from scratch intimidate so many people? I think it’s that whole crust thing. That’s why many peoples’ idea of a “homemade” pie starts with a store-bought, packaged pie crust to which they add their fruit filling.

perfect pie crust

 

 

 

Prepared pie crusts or dough are processed foods at their worst – full of unnecessary additives and preservatives that don’t enhance the finished product, the pie itself. You can make your own perfect pie crust using only 5 ingredients that you’re likely to have in your pantry. You can make the dough ahead of time and freeze it until that day when perfectly ripe summer fruit beckons you at the farmer’s market, begging to be made into a pie.

I’m a longtime fan of Bon Appetit magazine and every so often, they come out with these great tutorials for how to master something basic in your home kitchen. Recently, they featured a tutorial about fruit pie. I’ve made many different pie crust recipes, all claiming to be perfect, but the recipe featured in this pie tutorial really was! It’s flaky, buttery, light, and crisp, with just enough flavor to highlight fruit fillings. I found this perfect pie crust to be easy to make and work with later when assembling my pie. If you like pie, you can and should master this recipe.

perfect pie crustIngredients (Makes enough for 2 bottom-crust-only pies, or 1 top-and-bottom-crust pie)

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 Tbsp. sugar

1 tsp. kosher salt

9 ounces cold, unsalted butter (2 sticks plus 2 Tbsp.), cut into 1-inch pieces

1 Tbsp. raw apple cider vinegar

perfect pie crustStep one:

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 Tbsp. sugar

1 tsp. kosher salt

9 ounces cold, unsalted butter (2 sticks plus 2 Tbsp.), cut into 1-inch pieces

In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, and salt. Add the cold butter cubes and toss to coat them with flour. Now, working quickly and aggressively with your fingers, break up the butter and work the pieces into the flour. Keep going until you have large, shaggy pieces of dough with some butter pieces that are small and flat and others that are the size of peas.

perfect pie crustStep two:

1 Tbsp. raw apple cider vinegar

Mix the vinegar with 3 tablespoons of ice water in a cup. Slowly begin to drizzle the cold liquid into the flour butter mixture, running your hands through the mixture to incorporate. Knead the dough a little bit in the bowl to help it come together and pick up the dry ingredients. Then, remove the dough to your counter and knead it only one or two more times to incorporate any remaining shaggy or dry edges. Stop kneading – overworking your dough will make it less flaky when you bake it.

Step three:

perfect pie crustGently form your dough into a ball and, using a sharp knife, cut it in half. Press each half into 1-inch thick disks and chill for at least one hour before making a pie. Or, you can freeze the dough for up to one month. Thaw frozen dough in the refrigerator. All you need to do is roll out the dough and fill and bake your pie.

Once you master the perfect pie crust, you’ll never, ever settle for store-bought again!

 

 

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Category: Desserts, Food, General, Recipes

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