Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Old-Time Lard Crust

This is the same as the flaky crust, but it comes out sturdier, less tender, because of the lard. It also has a slightly "meaty" aroma and flavor, making it great for pot pies and mince pie.

2 Cups sifted All-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
2/3 Cup chilled Lard
2 Tbsp chilled butter
4 Tbsp Ice Water

*For a sweeter crust, you can take 1/4 cup flour out and replace it with 1/4 cup powdered sugar

Sift together Flour and Salt. Cut half of the shortening into the flour with a pastry blender, until it looks like the texture of cornmeal. Cut in the remaining shortening and butter until the dough is in pea-sized crumbs. Sprinkle on the water and blend in lightly with a fork. If needed to hold the dough together, you can add more water a scant teaspoon at a time. When you can gather up the dough in a ball, stop working it. Divide the dough in half, press circles between two sheets of waxed paper to make a disc. This makes chilling the dough faster and rolling it will be easier later. Put the dough in the fridge to chill for an hour or so before rolling. If not using it right away, put the dough in a large Ziploc bag and freeze it.

Then I just go ahead and roll my dough between the two pieces of waxed paper. You need to keep lifting and repositioning the paper when you do this, but it means that you add little or no extra flour to the dough.  It also makes transferring it from the board to the pie tin easier.

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