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Flaky Pie and Pastry Crust

Prep Time:

15 minutes

Cook Time:

Varies according to recipe

Serves:

Double Crust

About the Recipe

Pastry dough is a versatile and fundamental element in baking, serving as the delicious foundation for a variety of sweet and savory treats. It is always great to have a staple pie crust recipe. This is mine. Flaky and light, this hassle free recipe provides a fantastically neutral base to any pastry or pie
Comprising simple ingredients like flour, butter, and water (and sometimes sugar or salt), its magic lies in the delicate balance of these components. The process involves cutting cold butter into the flour, creating a crumbly texture, and binding it with just enough water to form a dough. This culinary chameleon can be adapted for pies, tarts, quiches, and more, offering a buttery, flaky canvas for an array of fillings. Whether you're crafting a decadent dessert or a savory delight, mastering the art of pastry dough is the gateway to elevating your baking game.

Ingredients

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup unsalted butter, cold and cut into small cubes

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup granulated sugar (for sweet pastry, optional)

1/4 to 1/2 cup ice water

Preparation

In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, salt, and sugar (if making sweet pastry).

Add the cold, cubed butter to the flour mixture. Use a pastry cutter or your fingers to work the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

Gradually add ice water, a few tablespoons at a time, and mix until the dough just comes together. Be careful not to overmix; the dough should be moist enough to hold together when pressed.

Divide the dough in half, shape each half into a disk, and wrap them in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour or until firm.

When ready to use, roll out one of the pastry disks on a lightly floured surface to fit your pie plate.

Follow the pie recipe instructions for filling and baking.

This versatile pastry dough can be used for both sweet and savory recipes. Enjoy your baking!


Tip: Pastry dough can be made ahead of time and frozen for future use, which is a convenient way to streamline your baking process. Here's a general guide on how to do it:

Prepare the Pastry Dough: Follow your chosen pastry dough recipe and prepare the dough as instructed.

Divide and Shape: Divide the dough into portions that you would use for individual recipes or pie crusts. Shape each portion into a disk.

Wrap and Chill: Wrap each disk tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil to prevent freezer burn. Make sure it's well-sealed to keep the dough fresh.

Label and Date: For organization, label each package with the type of dough and the date it was prepared. Pastry dough can typically be frozen for 1 to 2 months.

Freeze: Place the wrapped dough portions in the freezer. You can store them flat or stack them, depending on the available space.

Thawing: When you're ready to use the dough, transfer it to the refrigerator and let it thaw overnight. It's important to thaw it in the refrigerator rather than at room temperature to maintain its texture.

Roll and Bake: Once thawed, roll out the dough according to your recipe and proceed with your baking as usual.

This method allows you to have homemade pastry dough readily available, making it easier to whip up pies, tarts, or other pastries whenever the craving strikes.

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