Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Recipe: Pastry Dough / Pie Crust

Over the last few weeks, Kelli and I have posted a variety of mostly-complete recipes for things like empanadas and apple pies. The missing piece of the equation has been our recipe for pastry dough or pie crust. Well, here it is!

Ingredients
2 1/4 cups GF flour mix
1 tsp salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) cold, unsalted butter
1 large egg
1/3 cup ice water
1 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar

Steps
  • Sift the flour with salt into a large bowl. Cut the butter into half-inch cubes, and use your fingertips or a pastry cutter to blend the butter into the flour until the mix has pea-size butter lumps.
  • In a separate bowl, beat together the egg, water and vinegar, using a fork. Then, add the wet ingredients to the flour mixture, stirring with a fork just until everything has incorporated.
  • Turn the mixture out onto a lightly floured (GF) surface, and knead gently with the heel of your hand a few times. Don't overwork the dough.
  • Form the dough into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator for 15 minutes.

A few additional tips about working with GF dough: With traditional pastry dough or pie crust, you'd let the dough chill in a refrigerator for at least one hour. This period of cold rest is meant to allow the gluten proteins to relax. Since GF dough doesn't have gluten proteins, this chilling period isn't strictly necessary. However, we find that allowing the GF dough to chill in the fridge for at least 15 minutes makes the dough much easier to work with.

GF dough is fragile, and can be frustrating to work with if you're not patient. Whether you're making a pie crust, forming empanadas, or using it for some other purpose, follow these rules of thumb: When you begin rolling out the dough, place it between two sheets of plastic wrap (both to protect the dough and to prevent it from sticking to and tearing on the counter). Once the dough is rolled out to the width of the plastic wrap, remove the top sheet and place it parallel to and slightly overlapping beneath the first sheet. Then continue to roll out the dough across the second sheet to your desired thickness. If you're making empanadas, you can cut out the discs directly from here. If you're making a pie, leave the dough on the plastic wrap, invert it into your pie tin or Pyrex, and then peel away the plastic wrap.

- Pete

9 comments:

Adrienne said...

Could you point me to the recipe for you GF flour mix? The link on this post is broken.

Adrienne said...

Can you point me to the GF flour mix that this site uses? The link on this page is broken.

peterbronski said...

Here you go!

http://noglutennoproblem.blogspot.com/2010/04/artisan-gluten-free-flour-blend.html

Cheers, Pete

Amanda on Maui said...

Is this enough for a double crust on a savory pie?

peterbronski said...

Hi Amanda... Yes, this is enough for a double crust.

Cheers, Pete

P.S. I owe you an email response to your bread question. It's coming, I promise!

~Michele said...

Last night I used the pie crust recipe for a chicken pot-pie. Delicious! I've been using another recipe for years that has been flawless however I am moving more towards sorghum and away from rice so thought I'd try it. I needed to add more flour as it was pretty wet (humid here in Seattle) and once I did, it was perfect. Great flavor, nice color, excellent texture and almost stole the show from the roasted chicken but not quite. Perfectly balanced I'd say. Thanks for another great recipe!!

peterbronski said...

Hi Michelle... Fabulous! So glad to hear it!

Cheers, Pete

Neshama said...

Found your recipe. Thanks. How can I wrap this dough up and around an apple to bake? Many times the dough is too dry and doesn't stick together to allow me to wrap in one piece. Can I use coconut oil instead of butter? Or Coconut cream? I don't eat butter.
Thank you for your help.

peterbronski said...

Hi Neshama,

Yes, gluten-free pastry dough can tend to be fragile. Ours does pretty well, and maintains good moisture (so it doesn't crumble). We've never tried using coconut oil, but we think it would work. The dough may be softer as a result, so you may need to either a) free form press the dough around the apple, or b) roll the dough out between two pieces of plastic wrap, remove the top layer, place the apple on the dough, then use the bottom layer of wrap to help you lift and wrap the dough around the apple, before removing the plastic. Good luck, and happy baking!

Cheers, Pete