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A great pie crust is a rarity! I gave up years ago. There was an ugly Thanksgiving about ten years ago that involved a pound of lard and about 4 failed crusts.

Caroline M

Does it look like a pie? If it's not tough, chewy or burnt then it's good. It's been cold here so my menu for the week includes stew and then pie with the leftovers. I doubt mine will be bloggable as I fully intend calling it educational and using child labour. His standards are lower than mine because he doesn't mind if it is tough or chewy as long as there's a lot of it.


Even poor results will be tasty.I've heard cold ingredients help in creating flakiness, too.
Now I know why pie crust has always been a mystery and not in my repertoire.


Many years ago I had a great book on breadmaking. It contained a statement about homemade bread that applies to almost anything you cook.

Bread is like married love. Your first efforts will not be your best, but they're better than anything you can buy.


Offering my opinion...I do butter crust with a combination of chilled and frozen butter cubes and chilled vodka subbed for 50% of the water. I chill the dough for about 30-60 min before rolling out. Personally, i've never managed to get consistently flaky crusts before now. Even with freezing the whole pie and reheating (200 deg ~40 min for a thawed pie) I still have a flaky crust.

Cheryl S.

Glad you enjoyed the class! I remember that my mother rolled her crusts between sheets of waxed paper. I may try that.

As for the Kerrygold... I tried it once, and was underwhelmed. Like many European butters, it's cultured, and has a sort of tangy flavor that I personally didn't care too much for. But I know a lot of people rave about it. Obviously it's just a personal preference, so try it and see what you think.

I bought some other European unsalted butter that I liked better, but I don't remember the name, and I just finished it off last week.

I don't worry as much about the butter I use for baking (hence, I buy Kirkland brand at Costco). Unless it's something where butter is the main ingredient, I doubt there'd be much difference in the end flavor.

You might be interested in the Cook's Illustrated butter tasting results from 2011: http://bakingbites.com/2011/10/cooks-illustrated-picks-the-best-butter/

Cheryl S.

Maybe you should do a butter tasting, like this: http://www.dishingthedivine.com/2011/06/29/which-butter-is-better/


I'd even enjoy a class in 15th century Transylvanian macroeconomics if there was pumpkin pie at the end...


I love your resolutions, particularly #5!

I've always had trouble with pastry crust. Sometimes it turns out great, other times not so good. I'm never quite sure what made the difference.


The one thing I have found that really really matters is that the fat (I use Crisco) is cold and there is ice water involved. Minimal handling is important, too. I always chill my crust before rolling it out but my mother never did.

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