Never Fail Pie Crust

Never Fail Pie Crust is a staple in my family.  My mom got the recipe from her friend, and it has yet to fails us.  It is delicate, soft and flaky, yet sturdy enough to stand up to any filling you put in it.  You just won’t be able to wait to have another bite.  It’s very simple to make and can be used in any pie recipe that calls for a traditional pie crust.  It makes either 1 pie with a top, or 2 pies without tops.  If you do it right, you can get 2 pies with a wide lattice out of 1 batch.

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So here is how we do:

Start with 3 cups of flour and 1 teaspoon of salt in a large mixing bowel.  Mix them together.  Add 1 1/4 cup vegetable shortening (yes, you can use lard if you want to instead.  I know you were wondering 😉 )

Cut in the shortening.  I use a solid metal pastry cutter because I find the wire ones just don’t work as well.  You can also use 2 table forks if you don’t have a pastry cutter on hand.

After the shortening is cut in, mix 1 egg, 1/3 cup cold water and 1 Tbsp of white vinegar in a cup or small bowel.  Add the mixture to the flour mixture and combine well.

It will be super soft, but not sticky.  If it is sticky, simply add a little bit more flour until it is soft and just comes together.  If you are making it on a humid day, you will need to add more flour.

Turn the dough onto a lightly floured counter top and bring the dough together into a disk.  Wrap the disk in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.  This will make it easier to work with.  It can also be frozen at this point to be used at a later date.

When you are ready, take half of the dough and roll it out on a floured surface to about 1/4 inch.  Cut to desired size and shape.

Bake in a preheated 450 degree F oven for 10-12 minutes.  If you are pre-baking a shell, it will look something like the mini shells pictured below when it is ready.  Golden brown on the edges and lighter toward the center.  If you are doing a full size pie with crimped edges, make sure to cover the edge with foil to prevent burning of the tips.

*Use with Mini Strawberry Pie recipe

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Never Fail Pie Crust

What you need: 3 cups flour, 1 tsp salt, 1 1/4 cup vegetable shortening (or lard), 1 egg (beaten), 1/3 cup cold water, 1 Tbsp white vinegar.

Directions:  Mix flour and salt.  Cut in shortening.  Combine remaining ingredients and stir into shortening mixture.  Let stand a few minutes.*  Roll dough on floured board to desired thickness.  Place into greased pie plate.  Bake unfilled shell for 10-12 minutes at 450 degrees F.  Let cool before adding filling.

*Best to chill in fridge for 30 minutes.  This is also the time to wrap and freeze if desired.  Wrap unbaked dough in plastic wrap, place in freezer baggie and place in freezer.  Will keep in freezer up to 1 year.

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