Decorator pie shell (part 1)

Yield: 1 9\" shell

Measure Ingredient
1½ cup Flour; all-purpose
½ teaspoon Salt
1 tablespoon Sugar
6 tablespoons Butter; unsalted, chilled &
\N \N . cut into 1/4-inch pats
2 tablespoons Vegetable shortening; chilld
3 tablespoons Ice water

** Making the Dough ** 1. Combine the flour, salt and sugar in a medium-sized bowl. Scatter butter pats and shortening over the mixture and cut it with fingertips or a pastry blender until the mixture resembles coarse meal.

2. Drizzle 3 Tbsp of the water over the mixture. Using the blade of a rubber spatula, cut the mixture into little pieces. Press down with the broad side of the spatula so pieces stick together in larger clumps. If the dough resists gathering, sprinkle the remaining water over the dry, crumbly patches and press a few more times. Form the dough into a ball. Wrap it in plastic wrap, flatten into a 4-inch disk, and refrigerate at least 30 minutes.

** Lining the Pie Plate ** 1. Unwrap the dough and place on a floured surface. Dust the top with flour. Roll the dough in all directions, from center to edges. When the disk is 9-inches in diameter, flip over and continue rolling in all directions until 13 to 14 inches in diameter and ⅛-inch to 3/16-inch thick.

2. Fold the dough in quarters. Lay in a 9-inch Pyrex pie plate with the folded corner at the center. Gently unfold, draping the excess over the plate lip. Trim the excess to an even ½ to ¼-inch all around. If making applique-type decorations, retain the excess dough for this use.

3. Tuck the overhanging dough back under itself so the folded edge overhangs the plate by ⅛-inch; press lightly to seal. Select the decorative edge and follow the accompanying instructions.

** Baking the Crust ** 1. To firm up the shell, refrigerate for 20 minutes. Prick the bottom and sides at ½-inch intervals. Flatten a 12-inch square of aluminum foil inside the shell, pressing it flush against the sides and over the rim. Cover any exposed sections of rim with strips of foil. Prick the foil bottom in ten or twelve places.

Chill at least 30 minutes (preferably 1 hour or more).

2. Heat the oven to 400øF. Bake the shell for 15 minutes, pressing down gently on the foil with a mitt-protected hand to flatten the puffs. Start preparing the filling of your choice while the shell is baking. Remove the foil and bake the shell for 8 to 10 minutes longer. Pour warm filling into the hot pie shell and bake as directed.

*********************************** ** Making the Decorative Edges ** *********************************** Dough manipulation is the quickest technique because you're working with the existing dough. The applique method requires more working time since you must shape separate pieces of dough before attaching them to the rim. Once your shapes are molded or cut, arrange them around the rim and press down gently to assure adhesion.

** Button ** Roll marble-sized balls of dough between your palms, then flatten them slightly as you position them around the rim.

** Crisscross ** Place narrow 2-inch long strips cut from rolled dough around the rim, slanting in one direction. Add a second tier slanting in the opposite direction to create the crisscross pattern.

Tuck the ends under the outside edge. The pie filling will conceal the inside ends.

** Fluted ** Press the tines of a table fork into the edge, keeping the spacing uniform all the way around the pie crust.

** Leaves ** Draft a leaf pattern on cardboard, then cut out the pattern. Cut the rolled dough around the pattern and score the veins using the tip of a knife. The finished leaves drape and overlap the rim.

** Pinched Edge ** To create a pinched edge, push the dough with your thumb against the side of the thumb and forefinger of your other hand. This will create a high ridge with a subtle zigzag. Continued in Part 2 ** Handcraft Illustrated -- Sep/Oct 1995 ** Posted by The WEE Scot -- Paul MacGregor

Submitted By PAUL MACGREGOR On 10-02-95

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