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Sunday, October 21, 2012

Full Proof Pie Dough For Thanksgiving


2 1/2    cups unbleached flour

     1      teaspoon table salt

     2      tablespoons sugar

   12      tablespoons cold unsalted butter
             (1 1/2 sticks)

  1/2      cup chilled solid vegetable shortning
             cut into 4 pieces

  1/4      cup vodka ( cold )

  1/4      cup cold water

  Yield:  One 9 inch Double Crust Pie

 Since water bonds with flour to form gluten, too much makes for a tough crust. And rolling out dry dough is hard, so using vodka, which is 60%  water, makes for an easy to roll  crust with less gluten and no added alcohol flavor since it evaporates in the oven.


Mix 1 1/2 cups of flour, salt and sugar in a food processor  until combined, with about 2 one second pulses. Add butter and shortening and process until the dough starts to collect in uneven clumps, or in about 15 seconds.The dough will resemble cottage cheese curds and there should be no uncoated flour. Scrape bowl with rubber spatula and redistribute the dough evenly around the processor blade. Add the remaining cup of flour and pulse until the mixture is evenly distributed around the bowl and the mass of dough has been broken up with 4 to 6 quick pulses. Empty the mixture into a medium bowl.

Then sprinkle vodka and water over the mixture . With a rubber spatula, using a folding motion to mix, press down on the dough until it is slightly tacky and sticks together. Then divide the dough into two even balls and flatten each one into a 4 inch disk. Wrap each disk in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 45 minutes or up to 2 days.     

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