Pie Dough 101
You said you wanted a tutorial on pie dough; we listened and now you've got no more excuses! Earlier this week, I created quite the flour storm at Casa Appetite and shot photos every step of my pie-making adventure, just for you. The result: Pie 101: a how-to photo gallery.
The dough recipe details are below, as well as how-to for my favorite apple, rosemary and pine nut filling. But for now, I'll let the pictures do the talking, and you can tell me what you think in the comments area below -- or today at 1 ET for What's Cooking Thanksgiving.
(P.S. Big thanks to photo editor Troy Witcher for his on-the-fly wizardry.)
Apple Pie With Rosemary and Pine Nuts
From “A Mighty Appetite for the Holidays” by Kim O’Donnel
Flaky Pie Dough
Adapted from “The Pie and Pastry Bible” by Rose Levy Beranbaum
11 ounces (or 2 ¼ cups) all-purpose flour
¼ teaspoons baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt
14 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, diced (Alternatively, equal amounts Earth Balance spread)
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
5-7 tablespoons ice water
Method: Making Dough
You may do this by hand, as described below, or you may do it in a food processor, using a dough blade and the “pulse” function.
In a chilled bowl, mix flour, baking powder and salt. Incorporate (also called “cutting”) nine tablespoons of the butter with your fingers tips, a fork or a spoon, until mixture looks like peas.
Cover mixture with plastic wrap and chill for at least 15 minutes to let rest.
Remove from fridge and add remaining five tablespoons of butter, “cutting” until mixture looks like cornmeal. Let rest again, covered in fridge or freezer, depending on weather.
Place dough in a mixing bowl (regardless of method). Add cider vinegar, then gradually add ice water. Add first five tablespoons and check for moistness of dough. If it feels adequately wet, then you have added enough water. The weather will determine the absorption rate.
Press dough gently to combine and form into a disc. Wrap in a Ziploc-type bag and press to make flat.
Chill or freeze for later use.
Rolling Out Dough
When ready, make sure work surface is cool and dust lightly with flour. Cut dough in half with a sharp knife or bench scraper. Return remaining half to fridge.
With a flour-dusted rolling pin, pound on dough to flatten and soften. Rotate after each pounding or two. If dough begins to stick, add a touch of flour to the surface. When it’s flattened to an inch thickness or so, you may begin to roll out.
Always begin from the center. Each time you roll, rotate dough 45 degrees and check for stickiness. Roll until you have a 12-inch circle about ¼-1/2 inch thick.
Fold circle in half or into quarters and place into pie plate. Unfold and mold to the plate, pressing gently. Make sure you leave a border on the sides that can connect with the top crust, but trim any hanging dough with scissors or a knife.
Place a piece of parchment paper that’s been trimmed to fit inside pie plate and on top of dough. Fill paper with dried beans or rice. This helps to weigh down dough and minimize leavening.
Place pie plate in a preheated oven of 400 degrees. Keep an eye on the crust. You want it to get slightly tan, which takes about 10 minutes.
Remove from oven. Turn up heat to 425 degrees to prepare for baking of the entire pie.
Brush crust with one egg white mixed with a few tablespoons of water. This will help to moisturize the crust.
About 6 apples, peeled, cored and cut into slices, about ½ inch in size
2 tablespoons flour
Juice of ½ lemon
½ cup granulated or brown sugar
½-1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
¼ cup toasted pine nuts or walnuts
Place apples in a medium bowl; squeeze lemon over apples.
Add flour; this helps to absorb some of the moisture of the apples as they are cooking. Add remaining filling ingredients and stir to combine.
Taste. Are you happy with the results? If so, pour filling into “blind baked” bottom crust.
Roll out second half of dough for the top, as instructed in the dough recipe details, and pinch edges together around perimeter of the entire pie.
With a paring knife, score top to work as a vent, and brush top with more of that egg white mixture for shine.
Place pie on a baking sheet into oven and bake for 45-55 minutes, or until juices are bubbling. Pie should be golden brown.
Remove and let pie cool for at least two hours, a very important step if you want pretty pie slices.
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