Disclaimer: I know there are different techniques to making a pie crust; some bakers use butter only, some shortening only, and others use a combo of butter and shortening. Some roll out the dough with wax paper, some don’t. Some transfer the dough to the pie plate with a rolling pin, while others fold into quarters. Some use a fork to crimp the edges, some use their fingers. It’s all personal preference and an argument that will go down in history as to which is the best way. I’m not here to tell you which way is the best way, the following is just my way. Mmm k? Good. Whew.
You’d think with all my pie ramblings over the last several years that I would make crust from scratch constantly. But I don’t. I almost always use Pillsbury’s. I like their crust. And I’m
lazy busy lazy.
But there’s nothing like a homemade crust…if done right.
My mom’s is the absolute best, IMHO. But doesn’t the food from our own childhood always trump everything else?
Note: I included as much detail in the directions as I could, but I can’t really teach on paper how to make a crust. That comes from A LOT of practice. If yours doesn’t come out exactly how it should, keep trying!
Perfect Pie Crust
Makes 1, 9-inch crust
Prep time: 15 minutes
Chill time: 30 minutes
• 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour, sifted
• 1/2 teaspoon salt
• 1/2 cup shortening
• 3 tablespoons ice cold water
In a medium bowl, mix together the flour and salt. With a pastry blender, cut in the shortening until peas size pieces form. When the mixture sticks together, sprinkle the cold water over the dough as evenly distributed as possible, 1 tablespoon at a time, and mix until the dough holds together, but still a little crumbly. (Do not over process or your crust will end up tough. Take a bit of dough and gently squeeze it in the palm of your hand. If it stays together, you have enough liquid. If it crumbles, you’ll need to add a bit more.)
On a floured surface. Gently shape the dough into a flat round and then wrap it up in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
When you’re ready to roll it out, place on a floured surface and gently pat the dough out with your fingers a bit. Then flour your rolling pin; roll dough into a circle large enough to fit a 9-inch pie plate. Start rolling from the center to the outer edge, in single strokes, making sure to move in all directions so that your crust stays in a general circular shape. You should have about an inch of dough outside the edges of the pie plate.
To transfer your crust to the pie plate, take a lightly floured dough blade and carefully work it gently under the edges. Then, using the blade to help you as needed, gently fold the dough in half, then into quarters. Place the quartered dough into your pie plate and unfold it. Settle the dough into the pie plate and using your fingertips, gently press together any cracks.
Run a sharp knife around the exterior to cut off any dough that hangs over the plate. Crimp the edges with a fork.
Place wax paper over the crust and freeze in a freezer-safe Ziploc bag until read to use.
Note: You can also place a piece of wax paper on top of the dough to roll it out and prevent sticking.