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Home>Recipes
 
< Cranberry Pecan Pie  |  Pear and Pecan Salad Dressing: >
 
Pastry Dough
 11/8/2011  by  40ParkLane
3/4 stick (6 tbsp) cold unsalted butter 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour 2 tbsp cold vegetable shortening 1/4 tsp salt 2 to 4 tbsp ice water

The amount of water necessary to make pastry dough is likely to change slightly from time to time, depending on variables such as humidity and the moisture content of butter and even, believe it or not, flour.

Cut butter into 1/2-inch cubes.

To blend by hand: In a bowl with your fingertips or a pastry blender, blend together flour, butter, shortening, and salt until most of mixture resembles coarse meal with remainder in small (roughly pea-sized lumps). Drizzle 2 tablespoons ice water evenly over mixture, and gently stir with a fork until incorporated. Test mixture by gently squeezing a small handful. When it has proper texture, it should hold together without crumbling apart. If necessary, add enough remaining water; 1 tablespoon at a time, stirring until incorporated and testing, to give mixture proper texture. (If you overwork mixture or add too much water, pastry will be tough.)

To blend in food processor: In a food processor, pulse together flour, butter, shortening, and salt until most of mixture resembles coarse meal with remainder in small (roughly pea-sized lumps). Add 2 tablespoons ice water and pulse 2 or 3 times, or just until incorporated. Test mixture by gently squeezing a small handful. When it has proper texture it should hold together without crumbling apart. If necessary, add enough remaining water, 1 tablespoon at a time, pulsing 2 or 3 times after each addition, until incorporated and testing, to give mixture proper texture. (If you overprocess mixture, or add too much water, pastry will be tough.)

To form dough after blending by either method: Turn mixture out onto a work surface and divide into 4 portions. With heel of hand, smear each portion once in a forward motion to help distribute fat. Gather dough together and form it, rotating it on work surface, into a disk. Chill dough, wrapped in plastic wrap, until firm, at least 1 hour, and up to 1 day. Makes enough dough for a single crust 9-inch pie or an 11-inch tart.

< Cranberry Pecan Pie  |  Pear and Pecan Salad Dressing: >


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