To prepare everyone for a few recipes I will be posting later this week, I am posting this recipe for pie dough.
I have had quite the love hate relationship with pies and pie dough. My Busia (or grandmother) is the pie queen. She makes pie for everything. Every holiday and every family get together there is bound to be a pie there. I always hated pie growing up. I lied. I didn’t hate it I just didn’t like the crust. It was just bland to me. I much rather would have loved to be eating a slice of cake compared to a slice of pie. When I got to the point of having fallen in love with baking, I attempted pies and they just didn’t work. The dough wasn’t flaky and buttery. It was dense and tasted like yucky flour. Flash forward many years, not many more attempts at pies and here we are. I love making pie dough! This life changing event literally happened two weeks ago. I just needed to really immerse myself in it and get down the perfect flavor I was always craving and that perfect flaky texture!
A few hints before we start.
1. Keep it cold. The butter. The water. It needs to stay cold.
2. Don’t over work the dough. This will soften the butter, warms it up, which is exactly what we do not want.
3. Give yourself the time to chill the dough. Don’t rush it.
Hopefully you realized that there is a common theme here. The dough must stay cold!
Perfect Pie Dough Recipe
1 1/4 C all purpose flour
8 tbsp very cold butter, each tablespoon cut into quarters
2-5 tbsp ice water
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
First combine flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse a few times to blend it all together. Next sprinkle the cubes of butter on top of the flour mixture then pulse about five times. I count about two seconds as a pulse. Strain the ice out of the water before you add it.
Slowly drizzle one or two tablespoons of water into the dough as you are pulsing the food processor. Do this again with another tablespoon, and another, until the dough is just coming together. You shouldn’t need more than a few tablespoons. It shouldn’t be wet looking or feeling; It should still be crumbly.
I end up pulsing for a total of 15-20 times. Definitely no more than 20 times.
Dump the mixture onto a floured work surface and gently press it all into a ball shape, then flatten it and tightly wrap it with plastic wrap.
Refrigerate the dough for about 30-60 minutes until it firms up. Keeping the butter cold throughout the whole process is essential to creating a flaky crust.
After refrigerating you are ready to make something delicious!
I find this to be a pretty general recipe; It can be used for sweet and savory dishes. I personally like a heavier salt content in my sweets to cut the sweetness a little. I don’t think people use salt to its fullest. If you want a for sure sweet crust, double the sugar and half the salt.