Sweet Pie Pastry
|All purpose flour||300 Gram (2 Cups)|
|Butter/Margarine||200 Gram, cut in small (1 Cup)|
|Granulated sugar||100 Gram (1/2 Cup)|
|Powdered sugar||100 Gram, sifted (3/4 Cup)|
Measure all the necessary ingredients exactly.
Fat for the pastry can be used straight from the refrigerator if it is cut into small pieces.
Sift the flour to remove any lumps.
Because the pastry contains enough fat of its own, it is not necessary to grease the pan or baking sheet.
Sift the flour into a large bowl.
Using a pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in the butter or margarine until it is evenly distributed and the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
With a fork, lightly mix in the granulated or powdered sugar and egg to give a smooth dough.
Do not overwork the dough or it will become crumbly and tough.
Press the dough into a ball, wrap it in foil or plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
It is essential to wrap the dough to prevent it from drying out.
The higher the fat content in relation to the other ingredients, the longer the pastry dough should be refrigerated.
Pastry that is well chilled is much easier to shape.
Preheat the oven to 400°F (205°C).
Place oven shelf in correct position.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator and knead it gently.
Sprinkle the working surface and rolling pin with flour and roll out the dough.
Take care that as little flour as possible is mixed into the dough when rolling or shaping it.
Too much would alter the proportions and texture of the pastry.
If the dough becomes too soft, return it to the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Flan and tartlet shells are sometimes baked blind.
For this they are pierced at close intervals with a fork before baking to prevent the pastry rising or bubbles forming.
The pastry shell is then lined with foil or waxed paper and filled with dried beans.
The pastry is baked for 10 to 15 minutes and the beans are then removed.
At this stage, you can either return the pastry shell to the oven to finish cooking for 10 to 15 minutes, or add a filling and then continue cooking.
Freshly baked pastry breaks easily.
For this reason always let it cool for a few minutes, then carefully turn it out of the pan or lift it from the baking.sheet with a spatula.
Do not leave pastry in the baking pan or on the baking sheet until completely cool or the fat from the pastry will set and make it difficult to remove.
Basic pie pastry can also be made by quickly kneading all the ingredients together until a dough is formed.