Basic Pie Crust Recipe
Makes a Double Crust
2 ½ cups flour – stock
1 teaspoon salt – stock
1 teaspoon sugar – stock
2 sticks sweet butter (16 Tablespoons), sliced (and cold) – stock
approximately ½ cup ice water
Total Cost: Free(ish), depending on how stocked your pantry is
1. Arm the food processor with its metal blade. Add the butter, flour, salt, and sugar. Press pulse for about 10 seconds or so, until the dry ingredients resemble coarse meal.
2. Slowly, through the feed tube, drizzle the iced water while simultaneously pressing the pulse button. This step is critical – don’t over mix the dough as it will quickly toughen. You want to “pulse” it just until it holds together.
3. Lay a piece of plastic wrap on the counter and turn the dough out onto it. Separate the dough into 2 equal-size amounts. With very gently pressure, form each half of the mixture into a ball, then using the heel of your hands press them into flat discs. Remember, the less you handle and maul the pie dough, the flakier the result.
4. Cover each disc with plastic wrap and refrigerate them for one hour. *(You can refrigerate dough up to three days before or freeze it for a month. I often will double or quadruple the recipe, freezing several crusts at once so that I always have a supply for last minute pies.)
5. On a floured counter top roll out the first piece of dough and transfer it to a 9 or 10-inch pie dish, depending on the pie you’re preparing. Trim the excess dough to the edge of the dish if you are preparing a pie that has a top crust. If making a single crust, trim the dough, leaving a one-inch overhang for crimping. Save any scraps for cutting out decorative leaves for the top crust if you feel so inclined and are making a fruit pie.
For additional tips, the Food Network also has a fabulous round up of pie crust suggestions like adding cocoa and nuts to spice things up. Even the Crust Master herself learned a thing or two…