Cookies, we’re going back to the basics today. I always tell you guys I’m going to do a basics series. Then, I do one recipe, get side tracked, and move on to something else. You have got to start helping me stay focused! lol There are gonna be many pie recipes in our future together, so we’re gonna be a pretty amazing pie crust recipe in our arsenal!
First things first, we need COLD ingredients! I mean everything should be cold. Even the flour. Why? Because, we don’t want the butter to start to melt anywhere, but in the oven. So, we need to keep everything nice and cold during the preparation process. I keep a few sticks of butter in my freezer for this reason. But, if you’re a normal person, just give your butter an hour or so in the freezer before you start. I like to chill my flour and lard (or shortening) in the fridge for an hour beforehand as well. And as for the water, I fill a measuring cup with more water than I’ll need and drop some ice cubes in the there to keep it chilled.
You can either use all butter or a mix of half butter, half lard or shortening. For a flakier pie crust, use half butter and half shortening. But, it will still come out with a nice texture if you just use butter. Totally up to you.
Oh! If you have a food processor, grab it now! It’s the easiest, and least messy, way to make this crust. That’s just my opinion. However, this can definitely be done using a bowl and a pastry cutter. Or two knives. Whichever of the two you have available. Just be careful not to touch the ingredients too much or take too much time preparing the dough. I’m not trying to rush you and make you all nervous about this. It’s just pie crust, chile! But, we don’t want to melt that butter. So, move like you got somewhere to go, okay?
My recipe will yield (2) 9 inch pie crusts. After we have the dough prepared, separated, and rounded, we MUST refrigerate it for at least one hour. This will give the gluten time to chill out and ease. At all, it’s had a rough day in the processor. Now, you can also freeze these things. Just wrap them, individually, in plastic wrap. Throw em in a freezer bag and pop it in the freezer. When you’re ready to use, let them sit out at room temperature just until they are soft enough to roll out. Don’t thaw them all the way out. Use within 1 month, though.
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 stick, unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup shortening or lard (Crisco. Butter or Regular flavor, Original flavor, or whatever it's called)
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp granulated sugar
- 4 to 8 tablespoons of cold water (Don't panic. I'll explain below...)
- Place flour, salt, and sugar into a food processor or bowl
- If using a food processor, pulse 1-2 times to mix. Use a whisk if you're using a bowl
- Cut cold butter and shortening into small cubes.
- Add it all to the flour mix
- Pulse (or use a pastry cutter in the bowl) until the mixture is crumbly
- Now, add in the cold water 2 tablespoons at a time until the dough clumps when pinched together.
- Then, pour the dough onto your clean work space and mold it into a ball
- Cut the dough into two equal parts and form a round, thick disc with each part.
- Wrap each crust in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before using.
- To freeze, place each wrapped crust into a freezer bag and seal.
- Crust will last up to 1 month if frozen correctly.