We are three sisters united in our search for the divine - in food, libation, literature, art, and nature. This blog will capture the true, sometimes decadent, at times humorous, and every so often transcendent adventures of the Salvation Sisters.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

All Butter Pie Crust

by Michelle

All Butter Pie Crust

   Linda discovered this recipe many years ago. Unfortunately, the source is unknown (although we suspect it is Nick Maligieri's, pastry chef extraordinaire). The baking powder helps make a lighter crust. The only drawback is that the formed crust needs to be refrigerated thoroughly before filling and baking otherwise the pinched crust sitting on the rim can collapse inward on the pie filling.
   You might ask why we make an all butter pie crust. The simple answer is that Crisco and hydrogenated fats are poison to your body! Spectrum Naturals has a shortening made from palm oil which is a healthy alternative to products which are made with hydrogenated oils. In the end, we like the flavor of butter.
   You can successfuly make the pie crusts in volume and freeze for up to six months. Just process one batch right after another in the food processor. It is a real time saver to have pie crusts made ahead and flattened into 7 inch circles that are wrapped first in plastic wrap and then in foil. Use a Sharpie to write the date on the foil. I do the same for my short crust dough for tarts. Simply transfer the frozen dough to the refrigerator to defrost over night. You'll be ready to assemble and bake pies the next morning.
   This is the crust we use for making All American Apple Pie and Pumpkin Pie. Try it and taste the buttery difference.

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/4 cup cake flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
2 sticks very cold salted butter, cut into 16 squares
5-6 Tbsps ice water

1. In the work bowl of a food processor, fitted with the metal blade, add the flour, cake flour and baking powder. Combine the ingredients, by pulsing the ingredients 5 or 6 times. Add the butter, and again, pulse the ingredients 5 or 6 times, and then for 3-5 seconds, until there are small lumps of butter throughout the flour, about the size of peas, or a little larger.

2. Through the feed-tube, with the machine running, quickly add 1/3 cup (a little more than 5 tablespoons) ice water. After about 20-30 seconds, the dough should come together and form a ball on top of the blade. If not, add a tablespoon of water. Do not over-process to ensure a flaky crust.

3. Put the dough, and any little scraps on the bottom of a bowl together - pressing into a ball. Press the balls into a disc, about 1/3 to 1/2-inch thick. At this point, you can put the disc on a plate, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or up to 2 days. The dough, wrapped well, also freezes well for 30-45 days (defrost in the refrigerator overnight before using).

4. When ready to use, dust each side of the dough with a little flour, then roll the dough on a lightly floured surface to a circle about 1/8-inch thick. Rotating the disc, by quarter turns, as you roll to maintain an even circle.

5. Transfer the dough to a deep-dish 9-inch or 10-inch pie plate. Press the dough lightly into place along bottom and sides. Using a knife, trim the dough, leaving a 1-inch overlap*. Fold the dough in half to create a double thickness along the rim of the pie plate. Push lightly along the outer edge, leaving room for the dough to shrink on the rim during baking. Pinch the dough along the rim to create a decorative edge. Because this is an all-butter crust, it must be very cold going into the oven. Refrigerate the prepared shell for 30-60 minutes, or overnight lightly covered with plastic wrap.

6. If a recipe calls for blind baking, simply "dock" the crust, which means, using a fork, prick the crust along the bottom sides. Refrigerate for 30 minutes and then bake according to the recipe's instructions.
*Discard pie scraps, or make Pie Crust Cookies.

1 comment:

  1. all butter pie crust that looks as good as yours is difficult, but i agree, way less bad for u than crisco crust. i'll 4 sure be trying this


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