With the holiday season just around the corner, everyone, including myself will be jumping into the holiday baking spirit soon! Nothing can beat the taste of a homemade apple, pecan or heck, even a pumpkin pie! A lot of people are scared to make pies from scratch or they will “cheat” and buy the premade dough from the store, because pie dough has gotten a bad wrap for being tricky, difficult, or impossible to make! You have to have the right butter, the right amount of salt, an egg but not too much egg, etc. But what if I told you it is way easier than that! I have been making a crust with a recipe that was passed down to me by my Memaw since I was six years old! Even after learning the fancy pie crust recipes in culinary school I still make this one for any pie I make. It is quick, easy, and really there is no way you can mess it up unless you overwork the dough! So here it is:
Pie Crust Makes 1 9” crust
- 1 ½ cups flour (all purpose is just fine)
- ½ cup crisco shortening (I know you probably are like WHAT?!..but trust me)
- Pinch of salt
- Pinch of sugar
- 6-8 Tablespoons cold water
- Put your flour, salt, and sugar into a medium bowl and add your crisco (pro-tip if you plastic wrap your measuring cup when measuring out your crisco it will be a lot less hassle to clean!).
- Use a pastry blender, or your hands if you do not have a hand-held pastry blender and mix the flour mixture and crisco together just until it starts to form little pea size dough balls, once it starts to come together, STOP mixing.
- Add the water starting with 6 tbsp first. Mix it together with your hands. It will start to come together, only after you have mixed it well if it is still dry at this point add a little bit more water, only a Tbsp at a time. I hardly ever have to add extra water so start off with the smallest amount possible. The dough should be sticky but not so sticky you can’t get it off your hands.
- Roll out your dough onto a floured surface. I always like to put down wax paper and then flour the wax paper so I can roll out the dough with the wax paper behind it. Which then allows me to fold the dough over itself, using the wax paper to get it off the counter, into ½ and ½ again so I can easily pick it up and place it into the pie pan and unfold it.
- When rolling out your dough make sure you start by rolling out the dough from the center, up and all the way back down. Then take the whole piece of dough and turn it a ¼ turn and roll it again starting at the center rolling up and all the way back down. Turn a ¼ turn and repeat, until your dough is rolled out. I usually roll my dough out and check the size by turning my pie pan upside down and placing it on the dough and seeing if the dough has about 3 inches of extra dough outside of the upside down pie pan. If it does it is good to go!
- Once your dough is rolled out transfer it to your pie pan. If you put the wax paper behind your dough it will be easy! Using the wax paper, fold the wax paper with the dough inside in half, then peel off the wax paper from the dough that is facing up. Then fold in half again the opposite way you just folded, this will give you a ¼ piece of folded dough. Simply pick up your dough and place it in your pan. Make sure to push the dough into the pan a little bit and give your crust a little fancy edge with either a fork, or pinching it together with your fingers.
- Once you have your pie crust ready to go you can fill it with whatever you would like! Or follow the recipe below for a Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Pie!
Chocolate Bourbon Pecan Pie Serves 8-12 Makes: 1 9” pie
- 1 9” pie crust ^hopefully that you just made!
- ¾ cup light corn syrup
- ¾ cup sugar
- 2 eggs, room temperature is best
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons your favorite bourbon, you can add a splash extra if you’d like
- 2 ½ cups TEXAS Pecans
- ½ cup bittersweet chocolate
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Add your corn syrup, sugar, eggs, butter, vanilla, and bourbon and whisk together.
- Line your pie crust with the pecans and chocolate. It doesn’t have to be perfect.
- Pour your filling mixture over the pecans and chocolate. This will coat the pecans in the mixture, as they float to the top of the liquid this gives the pecans a nice candy coating as they bake!
- Bake for about 50 minutes to an hour. Check the pie at around 30 minutes if the crust is getting too dark, wrap the crust in tin foil and continue to bake.
- The pie is done when you can gently shake the pie and the filling moves all at once and is nice and set up.
- Let cool for at least 2 hours before serving.
– Meredith is a chef at Midlothian ISD’s The Mile. She has also run a restaurant and is in The Great Bake-Off this year!