Easy homemade Pie Crust
- 1 and 1/2 cups All Purpose Flour
- 1/2 teaspoon Salt
- a pinch of Sugar (optional – use for sweet pies)
- 100 grams (3/4 cup) Cold, Hard Butter, cut into cubes (or use Margarine)
- 7–8 Tablespoons Ice Cold Water (see tip 3)
- All the ingredients (including) flour and salt have to be very cold. SO freeze them for 30 minutes before using
- Cut butter into cubes & freeze for over an hour to get Hard butter cubes
- For the correct water measurement, you have to use your senses. Keep adding water 1 tablespoon at a time till mixture comes together.
Hand made version
- Add salt to flour. Mix well and chill it in the freezer for 10 minutes.
- Add cold cubes of butter to the flour.
- Using a fork, break up all the butter cubes into smaller pieces. Ensure everything stays extremely cold. If you feel the butter starts to soften, keep the bowl in the freezer for 5 minutes. Keep breaking up the butter cubes into the flour until the largest chunk of butter is as small as a pea. The butter pieces should still be visible, but they should be really tiny pieces. (If you have a pastry cutter, use that)
- Again freeze for 5 minutes just to make sure everything stays extremely cold.
- Take the flour butter mixture out. Add ice cold water – ONE TABLESPOON at a time, constantly mixing. (You can use the fork itself or switch to a mixer with dough attachment) Keep adding 1 TABLESPOON cold water at a time whilst mixing just until the mixture clumps up together. (If you pinch some of the crumbly dough and it holds together, it’s ready)
- Dump the mixture onto a work surface. Using your hands, pull the flour mixture together to hold its form. Shape it into a round disk and flatten it out a little bit.
- Cover with plastic wrap & chill for at least 30-45 minutes before using.
Food Processor Version
- Combine flour, salt in a food processor; pulse to mix.
- Add butter and pulse 6 to 8 times, until mixture resembles coarse meal, with pea size pieces of butter.
- Add ice water 1 tablespoon at a time, pulsing until mixture just begins to clump together. If you pinch some of the crumbly dough and it holds together, it’s ready. If the dough doesn’t hold together, add a little more water and pulse again. Note that too much water will make the crust tough.
- Remove dough from machine and place in a mound on a clean surface.
- Gently shape the dough mixture into disks. Work the dough just enough to form the disks, do not over-knead. You should be able to see little bits of butter in the dough.
- Sprinkle a little flour around the disks. Wrap each disk in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour.
To Freeze for Future Use
- You can flatten out the dough, wrap each one in plastic wrap and store in the freezer upto 1 week.
- Whenever you want to make your pie (or turnover / tarts / crostata), just take the pie crust out of the freezer and thaw in the refrigerator for 20-30 minutes to soften it a little bit.
Important : General Pointers for the perfect Pie Crust
- One of the secrets to a flaky pie crust is to work with very cold butter. Cut the butter into cubes and freeze, at least 15 minutes, best over an hour or even overnight
- It is super important to keep everything extremely COLD while making the dough, kneading, rolling etc. At any point if the butter melts into the flour, you will lose the flakiness. SO if you feel that’s happening, immediately pop the mixture into the freezer until its cold & hard again
- Making it in the food processor is the easiest way to make Pie Crust. But if not, use a cold bowl, cold fork and be careful not to over knead
- The dough, when you roll it out, should be a little crumbly at the edges. If your dough is too crumbly to shape, add more water, and if it is really wet (not crumbling at the edges at all), add a little more flour.
- I used a combination of Margarine and Butter. The recipe will work fine with just butter or just margarine too.
- If you want an extra flaky crust, shmoosh the dough mixture into the table top with the heel of the palm of your hand a few times. This will help flatten the butter into layers between the flour which will help the resulting crust be flaky. You can easily skip this step if you want
What to expect when your Making the Pie Crust : – If your crust —
- bakes too smooth, it was handled too much.
- bottom is soggy, use a dull pan next time or increase oven temperature.
- is tough, used too much water, or flour, or was handled too much
- is too tender and crumbly, used too little water or too much shortening
- is dry and not flaky, the shortening was cut too much, or too little water.
Ways to use the Pie Crust
- Traditional Sweet & savory Pies
- Tarts & Tartlets
- If you are using a food processor, you might as well double the recipe, make large batches and freeze separately for future use
- Category: How-To