Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Pie Crust...

...using butter. Last Thursday, I shared making butter.

*If you'd like more blogs like this, let me know. I love sharing recipes. Cooking is a hobby I've enjoyed for years. There's something about the creative process of turning a bunch of ingredients into something delicious that inspires me.

I've used a number of different recipes. I replace the shortening with butter. I've never used my homemade butter. I save that for bread.

For the record: Making butter from heavy cream or heavy whipping cream is more expensive than buying butter in sticks.

I always use unsalted butter. Several baking shows taught me that the salted butter makes it impossible to have consistent results. Sometimes, it doesn't matter, but in baking it usually does.

Some recipes call for salt, and some don't. I haven't noticed much of a difference there.

I cut up the butter into small chunks, put it in a bowl, and let it sit in the fridge to keep cold.

I use a food processor to make the dough, which keeps me from handling it too much.

Flour into the food process. Yes, I pulse it right away, aerating the flour.

Add the butter and pulse until it resembles a crumble.

Add cold water a tablespoon at a time. I refrigerated the water before using. Only add enough water for the dough to collect into a ball.

Wrap the ball in plastic wrap and flatten into a disk. Refrigerate, again. This can also be frozen.

After about 15 minutes, place the disk between two pieces of wax paper. Plastic wrap is usable but more apt to be caught into the dough.

Roll out. The nice thing about using wax paper is that you don't add more flour and it's easier to flip from side to side. Use as directed by the recipe, either pre-baking or preparing the pie.

Butter provides a flaky crust with a yummy buttery flavor. The key is not overworking so the dough becomes tough. Also, use high-quality ingredients, especially in recipes that have few ingredients, because the flavor comes through.

Sort of like life: Don't cheat yourself by scrimping when you need to give your best. Sometimes, it doesn't matter; part of life is learning when it does and making the most of it.

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