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Monday, December 23, 2013

Homemade Shortcrust for Pie or Quiche

 This may be a touch premature, since I haven't cooked or eaten it yet, but it feels like such a victory just to have rolled it out and fit it into my 27 cm pie tin.  This is my very first time making my own pie crust.  Apparently, once you do this, you never go back to the store bought stuff.
I used this video as a tutorial.  It seemed so easy there was no way I could not try it.
I laced it with Pain d'Epices spices to go with the maple filling I'm going to dress it with tomorrow.  Right now, it is chilling in my fridge.
250g (8.8 oz) flour (T65 or all purpose)
125g (4.4 oz) cubed room temperature butter
2 Tbsp sugar
1 tsp Pain d'Epices spices (or pumpkin spice)
1/2 tsp salt
1 egg yolk
5 cL (1/4 cup) warm water
1.  Sift together the flour, sugar, spices, and salt.
2.  Add the cubed butter, and lightly sprinkle the flour over it with the tips of your fingers, then continue to mess with it until the butter dissipates into the flour, and you have a sandy mix.
3.  Here's the technical part.  In French, they call it "sablage" which means sanding, but not in a sandpaper type of way, more of a light sprinkling of sugar type of way.  To do this, use both hands and rub the flour-butter between your palms, getting the butter thinner into the flour mixture.  Do this for a few minutes until the mixture is sandily homogenous.
4.  Make a well in your sand.  Add the water and egg yolk.  Mix with the tips of your fingers and gradually incorporate the flour mixture.  It should eventually come nicely together into a ball and the mixing bowl should be clean.
5.  Here's another technical part.  Place your ball of dough onto your countertop and dig the palm of your hand into it while sliding as far as you can.
The French call it "fraiser" which means to mill.  Do this a few times.  It is to even out the mixture.  Roll it back into a ball and let it rest at least 10 minutes.
6.  Next is the rolling part.  In the video, he does this directly on the countertop, but I tried and when it came time to transport the lovely thing into my pie tin, it broke and I had to roll it out again, but this time over a sheet of parchment paper.  That way, I just placed the parchment paper right into my pie tin and there it will stay, even during cooking.  Why complicate life?
7.  Press your dough into your pie tin and refridgerate under plastic wrap while you prepare whatever filling you are planning to use.  I'm leaving mine overnight, but I wouldn't leave it much much longer.

So does it take 5 minutes just like the video says?  No, but it seems to give a nice result.
It's going to get cooked tomorrow, naked, after having been stabbed a few times with a fork for 15 to 20 minutes at 200°C or 400°F.
This crust is delicious.  I can't wait to experiment with a savory version or for my beloved pumpkin pie which never lets me down.

Stay tuned for the maple filling!
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