Yield: makes enough pastry for one 2-crust pie (or two 1-crust pies)
“Back to Baking”, pp. 82
Although I love baking and everything it entails (preparing a savoury dessert or snack, smelling its aromas as it bakes and enjoying it warm with family or friends), one thing that I have always been afraid to try was to make my own dough to use for pies or other such dessert. For some reason that, after trying this recipe, I cannot fathom, I believed this to be one of the most difficult things to do as a baker. It seems so much easier to buy an already made and even rolled out dough! Not that I ever did, I was never a fan of pies (gasp!) ! I believe that is story of the past. The first recipe I wanted to try from my brand new cookbook from my baking idol was the classic apple pie. To do so, I obviously needed to make my own dough. Thankfully, Anna has a recipe, a perfect one might I add, for this. It is surprisingly very easy to do, basically foolproof (as can be testified by the fact that even I was successful at it) and very good. The dough was easy to manage and baked perfectly. This will be my go-to pie dough recipe for some time, I am sure of it. I lack the words to convey how simple and essential this recipe is, so give it a try!
- 1 cup unsalted butter, cold
- 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 4 teaspoons sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 egg, directly from the fridge
- 2 tablespoons cold water
- 2 teaspoons white vinegar or lemon juice
- While it’s cold, cut the butter into small pieces. Leave it at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- Combine the flour, sugar and salt.
- Add the butter to the flour mixture. Combine well using a hand or stand mixer until the dough is a crumbly texture.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the cold egg, water and vinegar (or lemon juice). Add to the dough all at once and mix until the dough comes together.
- With lightly floured hands, shape the dough into 2 discs, wrap them each in plastic wrap and chill them in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before rolling.
Notes from Anna (from pp. 78-79, 82):
- The pie dough can be frozen for up to 6 months and is thawed in the refrigerator.
- Butter’s consistency changes considerably from cold to room temperature. Due to the fact that butter softens as the dough is mixed, it can create an unnerving sense that a dough can be ruined if overworked. Worry not, it will all come together as long as the dough has had a chance to sit out of the fridge for about 30 minutes.
- The acidity provided by vinegar or lemon juice is key to a flaky and tender pastry.
- Every time you work your dough, whether it is mixing it or rolling it, you should give it time to rest.