How To: Make Awesome Pie Crust

Thanksgiving is coming early to Neverland! We’re hosting dinner on Sunday for some of my husband’s brothers and sisters, and I’m excited for what I hope will be the start of a new tradition.

I started prepping today with the crusts for our pies. After years of trial and error (ok, mostly error) I feel like I can finally say I have mastered the art of pie crust making. The recipe is amazingly simple, all you need is:

2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup Crisco
5 tablespoons of water

The assembly is the tricky part, but I’ve got a few tips to help you out. Anything *surrounded by stars* is something that I’ve found makes a big difference.

1) Fill a *glass* measuring cup with more water than you need and *add at least 4 ice cubes*. Set aside.

2) *Sift* your 2 cups of flour into your mixing bowl. Add the teaspoon of salt and give a quick stir with your *pastry blender*.

3) Add your 3/4 of Crisco *in 1/4 cup increments* so you have three separate dollops (or ten smaller ones if you’re like me and can never get it all out in one scrape).

4) Use that *pastry blender* to cut the Crisco in until it’s evenly distributed through the bowl (it will be both mealy and lumpy. Go with it).

5) Add your ice cold water in 1 tablespoon at a time. *Don’t* try to spread each tablespoon around the bowl (like you would put olive oil in a pan), pour the whole tablespoon *in one spot.*

6) After each tablespoon, use a fork to *press the dough from the outer edge of the bowl to the center*.

7) The dough will still look very floury after 5 tablespoons, but *stop with the water anyway*. You can lightly shape it with your hands into two balls *one just slightly larger than the other if you are making a double crust pie* or evenly to make two single crust pies.

8) Roll the dough out *on a floured metal cookie sheet*. Start in the center and change direction every couple of rolls. The cookie sheet keeps your dough cold and lets you move the dough to get a better angle without having to scrape it up and risk breaking it first.

9) When you are done rolling, *use a butter knife to completely separate the dough from the cookie sheet before attempting to move it*. I do not care what those toothy little liars on the Food Network tell you, crusts don’t lift off nice and pretty just by loosening the edges. Again, this is where cookie sheet comes to the rescue because you can spin it to reach every spot.

10) For a 2-crust pie, the slightly smaller crust goes into the pan, and the larger one is the lid. For both, put the ugly side towards the inside of the pie (you’ll know what I mean when you scrape it loose).

11) Check if your recipe calls for a baked shell first, then fill and decorate! 

Happy baking, and Happy Thanksgiving from Neverland πŸ™‚

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