Butter and Shortening Pie Crust

apple pie - Butter & Shortening Pie Crust

One double-crust 9 inch or 10 inch pie:

1. Make the dough: Combine flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor; pulse to mix. Add the butter and pulse 4 times.

2. Add shortening in tablespoon sized chunks, and pulse 4 more times. The mixture should resemble coarse cornmeal, with butter bits no bigger than peas.

3. Sprinkle 6 tablespoons of ice water over flour mixture. Pulse a couple times. If you pinch some of the crumbly dough and it holds together, it’s ready.

4. If the dough doesn’t hold together, keep adding water, a teaspoon at a time, pulsing once after each addition, until the mixture just begins to clump together.

5. 2 Form disks: Remove dough from machine and place in a mound on a clean surface.

6. Divide the dough into 2 balls and flatten each into 4 inch wide disks.

7. Do not over-knead the dough!

8. Dust the disks lightly with flour, wrap each in plastic, and refrigerate for at least an hour, or up to 2 days before rolling out.

9. Roll out the dough: After the dough has chilled in the refrigerator for an hour, you can take it out to roll.

10. If it is too stiff, you may need to let it sit for 5-10 minutes at room temperature before rolling.

11. Sprinkle a little flour on a flat, clean work surface and on top of the disk of dough you intend to roll out. (We use a Tupperware pastry sheet that has the pie circles already marked.)

12. Using a rolling pin, apply light pressure while rolling outwards from the center of the dough.

13. Every once in a while you may need to gently lift under the dough (a pastry scraper works great for this) to make sure it is not sticking.

14. You have a big enough piece of dough when you place the pie tin or pie dish upside down on the dough and the dough extends by at least 2 inches all around.

15. Place into pie dish: When the dough has reached the right size, gently fold it in half.

16. Lift up the dough and place it so that the folded edge is along the center line of the pie dish.

17. Gently unfold. D

18. Do not stretch the dough.

19. Trim edges: If you are only making a single crust pie, use a pair of kitchen scissors to trim the dough to within 1/2 inch of the lip of the dish. Tuck the overhang underneath itself along the edge of the pie dish. Use your fingers in a pinching motion, or the tines of a fork to crimple the edge of the pie crust.

20. If you are making a double crust pie, roll out the second disk of dough. Gently place onto the top of the filling in the pie.

21. Use a kitchen scissors to trim the overhang to an inch over. Fold the edge of the top piece of dough over and under the edge of the bottom piece of dough, pressing together. Finish the double crust by pressing against the edges of the pie with your finger tips or with a fork.

22. Make vents in top: Use a sharp knife to cut vents into the top of the pie crust, so the steam has a place to escape while the pie is cooking.

23. Optional Before scoring, you may want to paint the top of your crust with an egg wash (this will make a nice finish).

EGG WASH ( brush on pie crust 5-10 minutes before baking complete..monitor for burning)

A lovely coating for a pie can be achieved with a simple egg wash.

Beat egg yolk with cream and brush on the surface of the pie with a pastry brush.

HOW TO PRE-BAKE A PIE CRUST

If your recipe calls for a pre-baked crust, as many custard pie recipes do, follow all the steps above for a single, bottom crust only, without filling.

1. Freeze the crust it for at least a half hour, until chilled. This is an important step in pre-baking. Otherwise the crust will slip down the sides.

2. Preheat your oven to 350°F.

3. Line pie crust with aluminum foil: When the pie crust is sufficiently chilled, line the pie crust with aluminum foil. Let the foil extend over by a few inches on two sides to make it easier to lift to remove the pie weights when the baking is done.

4. Fill with pie weights: Fill the crust to the top with pie weights – dry beans, rice, or sugar. (Sugar works best.)

5. Bake: Bake at 350°F for 45-50 minutes if making a crust for a pie that will require further cooking, for example a quiche. Bake for 60 to 75 minutes if making a crust for a pie that you don’t need to bake further.

6. Cool completely before filling. You may need to tent the edges of the pie with aluminum foil when you bake your pie, to keep the edges from getting too dried out and burnt.