Ah, pie crust. I could practically eat it raw . . .
Well, okay, that’s pretty disgusting, so I take it back (sorta). But baked pie crust is an entirely different story. It’s so versatile—you can use it for tarts, dessert pizza, and (obviously) pies. And you can fill those pies with anything—lemon curd, banana cream, fresh strawberries . . .
Now that we’re getting into some serious summer weather, fresh fruit (yes, the kind that you don’t take out of the freezer and probably haven’t had since you were home for Christmas) is soon going to be abundant in grocery stores and farmers’ markets all over the country. You’ll be able to pick your own berries for cheaper than the cost of a vanilla latte, and everyone knows that berries taste best in pie!
It’s easy to haul down to the store and pick up a ready-made pie crust, but who needs that? People (cute people, obviously) will be sooooo much more impressed if you can make your own. Not to mention the feeling of accomplishment that comes from putting a homemade pie on the table!
Here’s how you do it.
Stuff You Need
To make one double pie crust (bottom and top), get together:
– 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
– 1 cup unsalted butter or vegetable shortening
– 1 teaspoon salt
– A bowl of ice water
– A rolling pin
What You Do
1. Mix the flour and salt together.
2. Take ½ cup of the butter or shortening and cut or break it into tiny (pea-sized) pieces.
3. Toss these pieces into your flour mixture, and massage them in with your fingers. You want them to get smaller and combine with the flour. Go for the consistency of coarse meal.
4. Cut or break the remaining ½ cup of butter or shortening into tiny pieces.
5. Add that to the flour mixture. If you want big flakes in your crust, don’t combine it much at all—leave some big chunks. If you want a fine, crumbly crust, combine it much more thoroughly.
6. Add the ice water one tablespoon at a time to your flour mixture. After each addition, mix everything together with a fork. When it barely holds together, use your hands to gather everything up into a ball.
7. Break the ball in two, and flatten each smaller ball into a disc.
8. Wrap the discs in plastic wrap and put them in the fridge for at least a half hour. (The dough can also be frozen indefinitely.)
9. Whip those suckers out of the fridge, sprinkle your smooth work surface and your rolling pin with flour liberally, and roll out the crusts to about 1/8” thickness. Take one, fold it lightly into fourths to make it easier to put them in the pan, then shove it in there.
10. Fill that sucker with some fruit, bake it up and enjoy a scrumptious slab of that homemade pie!