We all need a good, trusty pie crust in our lives because it is a major component of pies, quiches, cobblers, you name it.
Since it would be a cruel injustice if we don't pair our yummies with a heavenly partner (aka the pie crust), we need to make our own!
I know, I know. You guys are like Mei, I can buy two pie doughs, already made and molded in a pie pan, for under 3 dollars and zero minutes. Yeah...I thought the same at one point until I tasted some pie crust looking like cardboard. I'm pretty sure, even the Grinch wouldn't touch it with a nine and half foot pole. Yes, I'm talking trash about those pie crusts, but seriously, those frozen pie crusts are so disgusting. Ughh. Blehh. Aghh. 🤢
So, from then on, I was devoted to homemade pie crusts.
But before I can go on about the greatness of homemade pie crusts, I have to confess that making pie crust was a great nemesis to me. I was notorious for adding too much water or over-mixing. It look a few-too-many tries for me to make a perfect pie crusts, but let me tell you, it was all worth it.
If you haven't made your own pie crust before, you will feel the same as me after tasting one.
So let me share with you what I do to make my pie crust tender and flakey!
- Flour: You want to use all-purpose. It has just the right amount of gluten.
- Butter: I like to use unsalted butter for everything. Adding salt is nothing to afraid of, but taking away salt? It's a headache, so unsalted butter for everything! ***Do make sure the butter is as cold as can be. That's how we make the crust flakey and not too dry!***
- Ice cold water: Yes. Yes . Yes. This is very important because cold water prevents gluten from forming and also keeps the butter from melting. Everything needed to make our crusts flakey and tender.
- Salt and sugar: Because...flava'!
How I do it:
- Combine dry ingredients. Mix together the flour, salt, and sugar in a large mixing bowl.
- Add the butter. A lot of people like to use a pastry cutter or a food processor for this step, but I find those a pain to clean and not Mei friendly (well at least the food processor when I'm trying to make pie crust dough).
I prefer grating cold butter into whatever I need (a technique Grandma Rhoda taught me; grandma always have the best tricks! 😊).
So, grate cold, cold butter into the flour mixture and lightly rub the flour and butter together to incorporate. It will look like pea size butter balls.
- Add ice water. ½ cup of water with this recipe usually works for me, but sometimes if the air is really dry, you may need a couple tablespoon more.
So add a little less ice water than what the recipe calls for to start. Mix with either your hands or a spatula or spoon. Keep adding 1 -2 tablespoon of cold water at a time if the dough is too dry. Mix with every addition of water, but remember to not over-mix. *Finished dough should not be overly sticky and should form into large clumps*
Pat the dough into a ball and divide into 2 portions. Flatten each portion into an inch thick disc.
- Chill dough. Wrap each disc tightly with plastic wrap and chill for at least an hour, up to 4 days.
- Roll out dough. On a floured surface, roll out one disc of dough to ¼ inch thick. Make sure to lift up the dough after every few rolls to prevent sticking. Sprinkling more flour underneath if needed.
***Repeat this step to make another bottom curst or add a top crust to your creation!
- Mold into baking pan. Using the rolling pin, drape the dough over it and roll it onto itself like a scroll, so that you can easily transfer the dough safely onto the baking pan. Gently mold the dough to your baking pan and cut off excess. Using the prongs of a fork, dock the crust to allow steam to escape and to prevent uneven baking.
- Use the dough with any recipe in need of
a goodan awesome pie crust!
You are welcomed to make the dough ahead of time. It can be kept frozen for up to two months. To use it, simply thaw it overnight in the fridge.
Now that you've made and tasted your own pie crust, what do you think? Ever going back to those dark days of grocery store frozen pie doughs? Not me! 😜
Homemade Pie Crust
- 2½ cups all-purpose flour
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- Dash of sugar
- ½ pound unsalted butter, cold (or 2 sticks)
- ½ cup ice water
- Combine dry ingredients. Mix together flour, salt, and sugar in a large mixing bowl.
- Add cold butter. Grate cold butter into the flour with a coarse grater. Rub flour and butter together to bind.
- Add ice water. Add a little less the ½ cup of ice water. Mix the dough with a spatula or your hand. Add ice water, a couple of tablespoons at a time if dough still seem too dry. Dough is ready when large clumps form.Pat the dough together to form a ball and divid it into two portions. Flatten both portions into an inch thick discs.***Remember to avoid overmixing to keep crust tender.
- Chill the dough. Tightly wrap the dough with plastic wrap and chill for at least an hour or up to 4 days.
- Roll out dough. On a floured surface, roll out a disc of dough to ¼ inch thick. Make sure to lift up the dough after every few rolls to prevent sticking. Sprinkle more flour underneath if need.***Repeat this step to make another crust bottom or add a top crust to creation!
- Mold into baking pan. Drape the dough over the rolling pin and roll it onto itself like a scroll so that you can easily transfer the dough safely onto the baking pan. Gently mold the dough to your baking pan and cut off excess. Using the prongs of a fork, dock the crust to allow steam to escape and to prevent uneven baking.
- Use it for any recipe in need of an awesome pie crust!
- Pie dough can be frozen up to 2 months. Simply thaw in the fridge overnight.