YAY! This is my very first blog post and if you're reading this, I'm so happy you've taken the time to check it out and possibly try the recipe. It is officially fall time (my absolute favorite time of the year) and with Thanksgiving approaching you know what that means...PIE!
Now, many of you may know me as the cake decorator, but I actually have been baking longer than I have been decorating cakes. I truly am a baker first, cake decorator second. Being so lucky to live in California and enjoy all the 4 seasons, I do stick with seasonal baking. So depending on what season it is will dictate what I’m conjuring up in my kitchen. Basically, do not ask me to bake you a peach pie in the dead of winter!
Creating this blog is a way for me to share my passion for baking while continuing to create fun and exciting new cakes. I guess you could say, the best of both worlds!
Since this is my first post, we'll start off simple and basic...but don't be fooled by the simplicity of this recipe. Some of the best recipes have the least ingredients. Everyone wants a good, solid pie dough recipe which they can use for everything. I use this during the fall when I'm baking apple pies, pumpkin and pecan pies. During the spring and summer, I use this recipe for my berry crostata or crumble pies. You really can use it for almost any pie filling.
Some helpful tips when making pie dough; make sure your butter is COLD and that you use ice water. If your butter is too warm, it will prevent flakes from forming inside your dough. I place my butter in the freeze for 10-20 minutes after I have cut them into small cubes. Do not over mix and do not add all the water at once. Add a couple tablespoons at a time. Each batch is different and sometimes requires more or less water.
How long can you freeze pie dough? I typically like to make pie dough and keep it in the freezer so I have it available when I need it. Pie dough can be frozen up to 6 months. I wrap each disc in plastic wrap and then place in a freezer gallon bag to keep extra fresh.
8 ounces unsalted butter, cold
13 ounces all-purpose flour
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tablespoon kosher salt
4-6 tablespoons ice water, plus more if needed
1. Cut butter into 1/2 inch cubes. Place on parchment lined sheet pan and freeze for 10-20 minutes.
2. Combine flour, sugar and salt inside mixing bowl fitted with a paddle attachment. Remove butter from freezer and add to flour mixture. Turn on mixer on low speed to begin to break up butter into pea-size lumps. DO NOT overmix. You should see tiny lumps of butter throughout the flour mixture.
3. Add ice water a couple tablespoons at a time until dough begins to stick together when pressed between your fingers. The dough should be moist but not sticky and wet.
4. Remove dough from mixing bowl onto a lightly floured surface. Divide dough into 2 equal balls. Each ball should weigh 13 ounces. If there is a small amount of dough left after weighing, just divide among the 2 piles of dough equally. Pat dough down into a flat disc. Sprinkle each disc with flour and cover with plastic wrap and place inside refrigerator for a minimum of 2 hours or overnight.
5. Remove disc from refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for 30-40 minutes.
6. Lightly flour surface and rolling pin. Begin to roll dough, turning every couple of rolls to ensure you get a nice round shape. Roll dough to form a 12” circle, about 1/4 inch thick.
7. Brush off excess flour and transfer dough into a lightly greased 9” pie pan. Gently press bottom down as well as along the sides of the pie pan. Do not stretch the dough. With a sharp knife or scissors (which is what I like to use), begin to trim along the top edge of the pie pan. Leave 1/2”-1” over hang. Tuck the overhang back under the crust.
7. To create the classic flute pie crust, press the dough in between your index finger and thumb on the inside rim and your index finger of the other hand on the outside rim. Or you could always crimp the edge with the back of a fork if that’s easier for you.
8. At this point I like to refrigerate my dough for at least 30 minutes to 1 hour. This gives the dough time to rest and chill before baking. If you’re looking to get ahead, like I do, you can wrap the entire pie pan and refrigerate overnight or several days ahead.
9. Add your favorite filling and bake! I normally bake my pies in a 350 degree convection oven. Each oven varies in temperature so please adjust according to your specific oven.
Voila! You have a home baked pie to show off to your family and friends.