My family makes a lot of pies during the holidays, and that means a lot of pie crusts. Usually, that means a lot of measuring out shortening, and I’d really rather do that as little as possible.
My secret is to make a large batch of pie crust mix that will be ready for me to use as needed.
I mixed 10 cups of flour with 4 cups of shortening and 2 1/2 tablespoons of salt.
Then I used a pastry cutter to blend it all “until it is the size of peas.”
People always say “until it is the size of peas” when they give this step in the pie making process. I don’t get it. Just mix it up, cutting all the shortening pieces up until you have a crumbly dough.
The amount of pies this will make seriously depends on the size of your dish and the thickness of your dough, but generally speaking it should make around 10 single-crust pies, or 5 double-crust pies. Or some mixture of the two.
Put a lid on your bowl and tuck it away in your pantry until you need a pie crust. It has the potential to last 12 weeks like this, but mine has never stuck around longer than a month.
When you’re ready to make a crust, throw 2 1/2 to 3 cups of the mixture in a bowl. In a small bowl crack an egg, beat it up, and add 1/4 cup of water and 1 tablespoon of white vinegar. Add 2 tablespoons of the egg mixture of the dough and gently mix together. If it is sticking together it is ready to roll out, but it might need you to gradually add a little more of the egg mixture. Don’t overmix at this step, though, or your crust won’t be flaky.
And you’ll be sad.
Cold dough rolls out a lot better than warm dough, so you may need to refrigerate your mixture for a couple of minutes if you aren’t a Flynn.
The Flynns keep their heat at 50° because they can’t afford to keep their house warm. Then they huddle around the oven while pies are baking to warm themselves up.
Anyhow, I like to roll my pie dough out between 2 sheets of waxed paper and then invert it into my pie plate. Or tart pan…
Viola! Ready for your imagination to take over.
This one will be a quiche tomorrow morning.
But her sister was a tart, and she was delicious.