As a follow up to my Curry Minced Beef Pot Pie post. I thought I'd share how I got over my fear of pie dough.
As usual it starts with my food idol Kenji Lopez-Alt and his super simple recipe for an easy pie crust. The only catch was that he used a food processor and I don't have one. I had faith in Kenji's recipe development skills when he said that this was fool proof so I followed his step by step photo gallery and used the pictures to gauge if I was doing it right.
I figured that I could do this dough by hand since the first step was to create a paste with the butter and 3/4 of the flour. That's easy enough - that is if I had remembered to take the butter out of the freezer first. Fast forward 30 minutes with the butter at room temperature, a little elbow grease and voila - pie crust!
Instead of using the food processor, I simply smashed the butter into the flour and used the fork to scrap any dough/ butter off the wooden spoon. I was not gentle. I poked, prodded, smeared that butter all up in the flour until it was a smooth ball with no flour remaining - just like Kenji's slide show picture. This took about 10 minutes with room temperature butter.
|Photo by Serious Eats: http://www.seriouseats.com/images/2015/10/20151017-easy-pie-dough-vicky-wasik-6.jpg|
When I incorporated the remaining 1/4 flour, I used a fork to fluff/ incorporate it in a bit more gently. This took about 2 minutes to get it to look like picture below:
|Photo by Serious Eats: http://www.seriouseats.com/images/2015/10/20151017-easy-pie-dough-vicky-wasik-8.jpg|
The only change I made to the recipe was omitting the sugar as I planned to use this crust for a pot pie.
It was easy and if I can make it by hand this is certainly a fool proof recipe. The dough was flaky and buttery - everything you want in a crust.
My test turned out so well that I'm buying these disposable pie tins to make small pies that I can freeze and reheat! FYI a package of 6 of these tins at the grocery store is $3.50, on Amazon it's $10.99 for 40 pieces.
MontoPack Disposable 5" Aluminum Foil Tart/Pie Pans (40ct)
- 2 1/2 cups (12.5 ounces) all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 1/2 sticks (20 tablespoons) unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pats
- 6 tablespoons cold water
- Combine two thirds of flour and salt in a large bowl
- Add butter to flour. Use a wooden spoon and work the flour and butter into a smooth paste. This will feel a lot like creaming butter and sugar.
- Sprinkle with remaining flour and work in the flour with a large fork
- Sprinkle with water then using a rubber spatula, fold and press dough until it comes together into a ball.
- Divide ball in half. Form each half into a 4-inch disk. Wrap tightly in plastic and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before rolling and baking.