Greetings to all! Hope this message finds everyone safe and well. Last year I took a pie crust class from Williams and Sonoma and felt I had finally mastered making a pie crust since I was able to go home and duplicate it for Thanksgiving 07. I attempted to make one again this Thanksgiving for an apple pie and it was as if I have never taken the class. I made the crust three times before I got it to roll out and not be so sticky. The first time I made it I place the dough in the refrigerator for a couple of hours while I prepared other things. Someone told me that I should put vinegar in the dought. What is the true secret to making a flawless crust that will turn out every time? Is it in the the type of flour? Is it using shortening vs. butter? I know that ice cold water is a part of it and lightly handling the dough as opposed to the way you handle bread dough. Suggestions? On another note, I finally decided, after trying several combinations, that I like Golden Delicious and Granny Smith combined for my filling.

Thanks all,


  Pie Crust wheatleyp1 Greetings to all! H...
Pam, welcome back, I missed you! I am no pie dough expert, but the recipe my grandmother gave me is always fool proof. It does have vinegar, ice water, and shortening in it. If you want, I will post it. Mom also told me to handle it as little as possible because it makes it tough. Thanks for the apple suggestions. I typically do granny smith and macintosh. I prefer cortlands, but they aren't available in my area. It seems to me that PJCooks is the baker amongst us, maybe she will enlighten us all!

Everything tastes better Alfresco!

  Re: Pie Crust chef_Tab Pam, welcome back, I...
Hi there, stranger!! Good to hear from you. Everything you and Theresa say about what goes into a good pie crust is true, but there is one more component - regularly making crust!! Years ago when my kids were home and I was making pies almost every week, I made darn good pie crust. BUT, as the years went by and they were all out on their own, I rarely made pies and you can sure tell by the quality of the pie crust. You lose the 'feel' if you don't make them often. At least that's my thoughts on it.

One sugestion for the apples for your pie - and I just picked this up reading my new Dornenberg/Page book - I love using multi types of apples for my pies and sauces also. This is from their book, The Flavor Bible that I posted in another thread:

"I'm only into the "A"s - but what a lot of ideas. I love using multi type apples for sauce and pies, but 'they' mention layering them in the pie -
Galas/golden delicious for sweetness in the middle of the pie - soft Jonathans/McIntoshes on top for their abillity to melt into the others - Braeburns/Granny Smiths on the bottom for their ability to stay firm."
Retired and having fun writing cookbooks, tasting wine and sharing recipes with all my friends.

  Re: Pie Crust cjs Hi there, stranger!!...
I also struggle with making good pie crust. Occasionally I hit it right on the money and make a fabulous crust! But alas, there are far more failures.

I agree with Jean that one importnat component is practice and getting a feel for the whole thing. I have frozen pie dough in my freezer and just thaw it out as I need it.
"Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time."

  Re: Pie Crust luvnit I also struggle with...
I'm pretty sure I've confessed here before that my pie crust comes out of the red box. My mom used to make a lot of pies and I could make a crust with her back in the day. She used oil & milk in her method and rolled the dough between sheets of waxed paper. Not that I've looked very hard, but I've never seen that recipe in any of my books.

  Re: Pie Crust HomeCulinarian I'm pretty sure I've...
Hi there! Well, my attempt at pie crust is documented here. I don't know if you will find any answers there, but you're welcomed to look. There's some other stuff there, of course, but some advice, as well.

I finally got it right, but couldn't tell you how. I agree with the others that doing it regularly would be helpful...like with other doughs...knowing the feel of the dough is essential. You would think that since I have a good deal of success with other doughs, I could do this one. So, since I work and weekends are filled, I returned to the red box. Sorry!
Keep your mind wide open.

  Re: Pie Crust Gourmet_Mom Hi there! Well, my ...
I have a great recipe for pie crust...will not work unless you live near TRADER JOEs...they have the best pie crust ever in the freezer section. You will not be able to taste the difference with the homemade one. I converted many fabulous bakers to using that one. Try it if you have a chance.
  Re: Pie Crust luvnit I also struggle with...
Layering the apples...wow that sounds great I will try that one when I make my pie next week. I believe you can get all three of those here in Atlanta. I think you are right about the feel and working with the crust frequently. Funny how that works but true.

  Re: Pie Crust wheatleyp1 Layering the apples....
Funny, after all this discussion of dough, I decided to make pastry like my grandma made. She would take flour and chicken broth and mix it with a fork until it was "just right". The she would wrap it an put it in the fridge to "rest" for a while. Then she would take it out and roll it out thin and cut it into strips. These strips were then "stretched" to the desired thickness...very thin. It was then left to dry overnight to be added to the chicken broth for Sunday dinner.

SO, I followed her method up to taking it out of the fridge. This is where modern technology came in. I used my KA roller to roll it out to 6, cut it into strips and dropped it slowly into my chicken broth working at a rolling boil. HEAVEN! It was so fluffy and light...just like I remembered! (I decided the drying stage was done to prep the dough and keep from having to roll and stretch it after Sunday church.)

My Thanksgiving redux was a HUGE hit! I think I might try pie crust again! I'm feeling empowered! It's all about the feel of the dough. Instinctively, I knew to add a little more broth to get the "feel" right. If I know this for pastry/pasta, I should know it with pastry for pies...right?
Keep your mind wide open.
  Re: Pie Crust chef_Tab Pam, welcome back, I...
Theresa thanks for the welcome back message. Work has been hetic and very busy the past few weeks. Finally started vacation today and will be off until Jan 12th. I would love the pie crust recipe. Please post. Thank you
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