Pastry Blender Tip

apple pie and crust made with a pastry blender

Why Should I Use a Pastry Blender?

There are two ways that you can use a pastry blender.  Wait, what is a pastry blender.  A pastry blender basically creates a flaky crust. The pastry blender is used to cut in flour with fat until it resembles crumbs.  If you do not have a pastry blender, you can substitute it for two knives, and it will work out the same or you can simply use a box grater and shred your butter quickly before it begins to soften. Scrape the butter out from the box grater as you go along, or it softens and is one clump of fat. The key is, make sure your butter is very cold.  When using the box grater, be extra careful to not cut yourself as the butter becomes slippery as it softens, and you would not like the feeling of having your knuckles scraped against the box grater. Ouch!  Be careful and do not move too fast while grating the butter, please!

I love this pie crust recipe in the way the butter combines with the flour to make a very moist, flaky, and buttery tasting crust.  So, so good.  I am hoping you will enjoy this crust as much as I do.  I use this pie crust recipe for most of my pies and have even used it when making my beef patties and chicken stromboli and pot pies.  All in all, this is my go-to-pie crust recipe that all ages will enjoy, and it only requires four ingredients that are probably in your refrigerator or pantry.  When baking this pie crust, depending how you fill it after putting it in your pie plate will depend on how much it will shrink. Do not stretch the pie crust as you are putting it on the pie plate.  Roll out the dough enough to overlap and tuck it under.  I love this part as a thick crust is heaven.  I love to do this technique as it makes a thick edge around the pie crust.  Then, I poke light holes (docking) on the pie crusts to prevent air bubbles from the heat when placing in the oven. If pre-baking your pie crust, add beans or rice, lined with parchment paper before placing in the oven.

Some people do not bake their pie crust before filling, but to get the best crust, bake it for 15 – 20 minutes in the oven.  This is the point in which you would notice the shrinkage, if you fluted it correctly and pierced light holes in the pie crust, and filled it, it should NOT shrink, but if you missed one of these steps, then it will shrink. You can still use the pie crust, DO NOT THROW IT AWAY. Check out my Pie Crust Recipe and follow all the steps, you’ll never look back.  So, let’s get going and stop talking, as my mother would say. Bye now.

Aunt Carmen

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