Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Deluxe Butter Flaky Pastry Dough (Pate Brisee)

My friend Suriya has asked me to post the pastry crust recipe I always use-

Deluxe Butter Flaky Pastry Dough (Pate Brisee)

From: Joy of Cooking: All About Pies and Tarts by Irma S. Rombauer, et. al

This dough is richer in fat than ordinary flaky pastry and is thus softer and more difficult to handle, but it yields a marvelously tender; flaky crust with a superb butter flavor. While it is possible to make this dough with butter only a small amount of shortening makes it flakier without interfering with the buttery taste. Since this dough tends to puff out of shape during baking, you should not use it to make a crust with a tightly fluted or braided edge. If you want to make this in a food processor; see link below. If you need only a single pie or tart crust decrease all ingredients by half or freeze half the dough for future use.

Makes two 9-inch pie crusts, or two 9 1/2- or 10 inch tart crusts, or one covered pie crust

Using a rubber spatula, thoroughly mix in a large bowl:

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon white sugar or 1 tablespoon powdered sugar
1 teaspoon salt

Working quickly to prevent softening, cut into 1/4-inch pieces:

1/2 pound (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter

Add the butter to the dry ingredients. Using a pastry blender or 2 knives, chop the butter into pea-sized pieces. Add:

1/4 cup solid vegetable shortening

With a few quick swipes of the pastry blender [or two butter knives], cut the shortening into large chunks and distribute throughout the bowl. Continue to chop until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs with some pea-sized pieces. Do not let the mixture soften and begin to clump; it must remain dry and powdery. Drizzle over the flour and fat mixture:

1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon ice water

Cut with the blade side of the rubber spatula until the mixture looks evenly moistened and begins to form small balls. Press down on the dough with the flat side of the spatula. If the balls of dough stick together, you have added enough water; if they do not, drizzle over the top:

1 to 2 tablespoons ice water

Cut in the water, then press with your hands until the dough coheres. The dough should look rough, not smooth. Divide the dough in half, press each half into a thick, flat disk, and wrap tightly in plastic. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, preferably for several hours, or for up to 2 days before rolling. [Don't skip this step] The dough can also be wrapped airtight and frozen for up to 6 months; thaw completely before rolling.

Link for recipe and for directions to use your food processor: http://www.recipelink.com/ch/2002/october/jocpiesandtarts1.html


Sara said...

I included the french name (Pate Brisee) just so I could keep up with my world traveler sister. I'm almost as cool. really.

April said...

That's right, don't you forget it! It's about time the big sister tried to keep up with the little sister! ;)