My hints for pie crust – I make mine with lard, which sounds awful, but
makes the flakiest, most sog-resistant crust in the world. You take 1 cup
of flour, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and then cut in 1/3 cup of lard with a
pastry cutter until the pastry makes little balls somewhere between
cornmeal consistency and baby peas (not babyfood peas, silly!) Add a
Tablespoon of ice water and cut it in. Add another Tablespoon and cut in.
Add more in tiny amounts just until the pastry sticks to itself and comes
clean from the sides of the bowl. Now it’s ready to roll out. Now, let me
tell you a couple of other great tools. There is a pastry cutter out there
that’s made from a solid piece of metal that’s had several parallel slices
made and then twisted and sharpened that works lots better than the old
curved wire pastry cutters. It doesn’t shift around and actually cuts the
pastry. Look for one of these. Also, pick up a pastry cloth and rolling
pin stocking. You liberally flour the cloth before putting on the dough,
then liberally flour the stocking on the rolling pin, and your pastry will
not only roll out without sticking to anything, but can also be easily
transferred to the pie plate. All you do it put the plate upside down over
the rolled out pastry, slide our hand under the pastry cloth and invert the
cloth and plate. The cloth comes right off and there’s your pastry
perfectly centered in the pie plate. Oh, and as for measuring the lard, use
the old trick of filling a 2-cup liquid measure with 1 cup of ice water and
adding the lard until it measures 1 1/3 cup.
* From the Polka Dot Cottage, 1-201-822-3627, NJ’s BBS for Homemakers!