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Illegitimi Non Carborundum

Basic Flaky Pie Crust

Posted by Tom on Dec-26-2014

pie crust






Basic Flaky Pie Crust

This pie crust is light, flaky, tender and very crisp.


  • 8 Tbs – Unsalted butter, cold (4 oz)
  • 1 1/3 Cups + 4 tsp – pastry flour or all purpose flour (6.5 oz)
  • 1/4 tsp – salt
  • 1/8 tsp – baking powder
  • 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 Tbs – ice water
  • 1 1/2 tsp – cider vinegar


  1. Divide the butter into two parts, about two thirds to one third (5 Tbs and 3 Tbs)
  2. Cut the butter into 3/4 inch cubes. Wrap each portion of butter with plastic wrap. Refrigerate the larger amount and freeze the smaller for at least 30 minutes. Place the flour, salt, and baking powder in a reclosable gallon-size freezer bag and freeze for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Place the flour mixture in a food processor with the metal blade and process for a few seconds to combine. Set the bag aside.
  4. Add the larger amount of butter cubes to the flour and process for about 20 seconds or until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add the remaining frozen butter cubes and pulse until all of the frozen butter is the size of peas. (Toss with a fork to see it better.)
  5. Add the lowest amount of the ice water and the vinegar and pulse 6 times. Pinch a small amount of the mixture together between your fingers. If it does not hold together, add half the remaining water and pulse 3 times. Try pinching the mixture again. If necessary, add the remaining water, pulsing 3 times to incorporate it. The mixture will be in articles and will not hold together without bing pinched.
  6. Spoon the mixture into the plastic bag.
  7. Holding both ends of the bag opening with your fingers, knead the mixture by alternately pressing it. From the outside of the bag, with the knuckles and heals of your hands until the mixture holds together in one piece and feels slightly stretchy when pulled.
  8. Wrap the dough with plastic wrap, flatten it into a disc and refrigerate for at least 45 minutes, preferably overnight.

Store: Refrigerated, up to 2 days; frozen up to 3 months



I like adding a base to the pie crust if not pre-baking it

  • 4 (2-inch) Gingersnaps
  • 1/4 cup – Pecan halves

Process the gingersnaps and pecans until finely ground. Sprinkle them over the bottom of the pie crust and, using your fingers and the back of a spoon, press them into the dough to coat the entire bottom, going about 1/2 inch up the sides.

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