Pie Crust

Recipe from Alton Brown
Makes 1 pie crust.


3 ounces (6 tablespoons) butter, chilled
1 ounce (2 tablespoons) lard or vegetable shortening, chilled
6 ounces (approximately 1 cup) all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling dough
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1/4 cup ice water (or an aromatic liquor…Whiskey, Rum, Applejack)
Approximately 32 ounces of dried beans, for blind baking

Instructions (modified from the original recipe)

Butter and lard/shortening should be cold.  I use the Crisco shortening sticks and just leave them in the refrigerator all year, so they’re ready when I need them.  If you like, put them in the freezer for 15 minutes.  When ready to use, remove and cut both into small pieces.

In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour and salt by pulsing 3 to 4 times. Add butter and pulse 5 to 6 times until texture looks mealy. Add lard/shortening and pulse another 3 to 4 times. Remove lid of food processor and spritz surface of mixture thoroughly with water.  (When I can’t find my spritzer, I pour it in slowly making sure to cover as much flour as possible.  It works just as well)  Replace lid and pulse 5 times. Add more water and pulse again until mixture holds together when squeezed.  If you’re unsure about the amount of water you’ve put in, it’s always better to err on the side of too wet.  Pie crust dough that is too dry will not roll out well. You can always add flour later to make it the right consistency.

Roll out about a foot of saran wrap and set on counter. Carefully transfer the mixture from the food processor onto the saran wrap, then fold the edges of the wrap up and over so you cover the full pie crust.  Massage it into a disc, making sure to get any dry crumbs incorporated into the moist disc.  Put it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes, and up to 1 day.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Remove dough from refrigerator.  Generously flour a silicone baking mat.  Roll out the disc, gently at first, to a 12-inch (ish) diameter.  While you’re rolling the dough, be sure to flip it often so it doesn’t stick to the mat.  Fold the dough into half, then half again.  Transfer to a pie dish, then unfold the dough all the way.  Poke holes in dough and place in refrigerator for 15 minutes.

Place a large piece of parchment paper on top of dough and fill with dry beans. Press beans into edges of dough and bake in the oven for 10 minutes. Remove parchment and beans and continue baking until golden in color, approximately 10 to 15 minutes longer. Remove from oven and place on cooling rack. Let cool completely before filling.

See AB’s full recipe here

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