One of the most intimidating things, for me at least, is making pie crust from scratch. I’m not sure why the baking world perpetuates this but, after hearing how difficult pie crust was for just about everyone, I made a silent note to never bother trying it for myself. That is, until a few months ago when I made this pie and realized something. Pie crust is actually SUPER simple! Now, I know there are horror stories out there (I have a few myself) but hear me out! All that is required in making a good pie crust is knowing a few little tricks ie using cold butter and not over mixing.
Because I find images extremely helpful when tackling a particularly difficult recipe, I decided to show you the process step-by-step. To start, pulse together 2/3 of the flour with 3 TBS. sugar and 1/4 tsp. salt in a food processor(I use this one). Then, cube 2.5 sticks of cold unsalted butter and spread it evenly around the bowl of the food processor. Pulse together 25 times (again, using short pulses) or until the butter is well incorporated. Next, add the rest of the flour and pulse together another five times.
Transfer the flour mixture into a bowl and sprinkle with about 5-6 TBS of cold water and knead together until the dough comes together. When you first start kneading the flour mixture together, you might get worried that it’s looking a bit dry. Don’t freak out and add more water! Simply press the mixture together and eventually it will form a ball. I promise!
Once the dough comes together, wrap in saran wrap and place in the fridge for about two hours (this keeps the butter in tact so you end up with a flaky dough). Once chilled, place on a floured surface and roll into a large sheet. (*TIP: At first, the dough will be a little stiff. To help with this I usually start rolling and, if the dough cracks, I reshape into a ball and start again. This usually solves the problem, and the dough rolls out easily.)
Once you have rolled out your dough, gently place it into your pie dish. Next, even off the excess dough leaving a good amount for the decorative trim.
Fold the excess dough around the trim on top of itself then, using the knuckle of your pointer finger and the pointer and middle fingers on the opposite hand, push the dough to form a scalloped edge. (If you need a video tutorial on this, here is a good one )
And now you have a gorgeous pie crust! Now, to keep the pie from wilting in the oven (if you are cooking it separately from the filling) you need to use uncooked beans as a weight. Side note: I made this the other day and didn’t use the dried beans and ended up with a blob of dough at the bottom of a pie dish 🙁 Let’s just say I will never do that again! So learn from my mistake! Always use the weights. To do this, just place a piece of parchment paper inside of the pie dish, then fill with uncooked beans and cook as normal!
Oh! And to get a nice golden crust, brush the edges with an egg wash right before popping it in the oven. Now, I’m dying to know. What are your experiences with pie crust? I would love to know any fail-proof tips you have!
- 12.5 oz flour
- 3 tbs. granulated sugar
- ¼ tsp. salt
- 2.5 sticks cold unsalted butter (cubed)
- 5-6 TBS cold water
- 1 egg white
- In a food processor, combine ¾ of the flour with the sugar and salt. Pulse together 2 times.
- Then, add the butter (be sure to evenly spread it around the bowl of the processor) and pulse together 25 times (using short pulses).
- Add the remaining flour and pulse together 5 times, then place the flour mixture into a large bowl. Add the cold water and knead together until a ball forms.
- Form a disk, cover with saran wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
- Once chilled, roll out into a large circular sheet.
- Place in pie dish, and decorate as you wish.
- Before cooking, brush the crust with egg wash (just whisk the egg white)
- Then place a piece of parchment in the pie and fill with dried beans (this helps keep the shape of the crust while baking)
- Bake on 350 for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown.