COOKING TIP: Blind Baking Pastry

July 10, 2007

Blind bake pastry crusts while pre-heating the oven.


Savory Pastry

May 14, 2007

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My favorite pie crust—and the world’s easiest. You can make it in two minutes, tops. There’s no high-tech. Let the flour take up as much liquid as it wants and handle the dough as little as possible—otherwise it’ll be tough. Blind-baking makes it crisper, especially with soupy fillings. Minus the cornmeal, I even use it for desserts. If you don’t want the nutty olive oil taste, substitute a neutral oil like safflower. SAM

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon white cornmeal
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
4 tablespoons ice water
4 tablespoons olive oil

Lightly grease a 9-inch tart pan or shallow baking dish.

Combine the flour, cornmeal, and salt in a small bowl and make a well in the center. Into a small juice glass, measure the ice water, then the oil. Beat rapidly with a fork to form an emulsion and pour into the center of the flour. Stir gently with the fork just enough to form a ball. Discard any extra flour. Knead the dough two or three times and place in the center of the pan. With your knuckles, spread evenly across the bottom and up the sides.

This crust may be used unbaked or blind-baked. To blind-bake, prick bottom and sides with a fork and bake at 350 degrees F for 10 minutes.
Makes 1 (9-inch) pastry shell.