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Butter Flaky Pie Crust
Reviews:
July 02, 2006

Excellent crust! I've made this crust many times, and I finally mastered the techniques to make it flaky (not recipe's fault but b/c inexperience). Previously, I over-worked the dough, used too much water, and/or didn't keep the dough cold enough, which made the crust tough and soggy. Tips: keep it cold & work it sparingly. Chill water in the freezer until ice crystals begin to form. Cut very cold UNSALTED butter into cubes & cut it in the flour & salt with a pastry blender (or pulse in food processor) until it resembles coarse crumbs. Transfer to large bowl & gently toss water into crumbs 1 tsp at a time with a fork. Do not use food processor to incorporate water - it's too easy to overwork the dough. The dough should have small bits of butter - this makes the crust flaky. Cool off hands under cold water, pat dry, gather the crumbs into a flattened ball, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate. Refrigeration is necessary b/c it allows the gluten to relax and prevent shrinkage. You may need to roll out the dough twice. First roll out is usually crumbly, uneven, and has large breaks. Gently gather in edges to form another ball, flip it smooth side up, and roll out again. Smooth, round, even crust should be easier the second roll out. See pics of the process.

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