Saturday, 16 February 2013

Posted by Judie on Saturday, 16 February 2013
A Sweet Pastry Crust which is ideal for various desserts such as tarts and pies, especially those filed with fruit and/or cream. The pastry is usually pre-baked. While common practice is to line and fill the unbaked pastry crust with pie weights or rice before baking to prevent the pastry from shrinking and puffing up, you can simply place the unbaked pastry crust in the freezer for 15 minutes. This sets the crust which prevents these problems. Once the pastry shell has been baked, it is a good idea to 'seal' the crust. This sealing prevents the tart filling from softening the crust over time. 




Ingredients:
Serves 4
  • 1 1/2 cups / 195g all purpose flour
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup / 113g unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup / 50g granulated white sugar
  • 1 large egg, beaten

Directions:
In a bowl whisk the flour with the salt. Place the butter in a separate bowl and beat with a mixer until softened. Add sugar to butter and beat until light and fluffy. Gradually add the beaten egg, beating just until incorporated. Add the flour mixture all at once and mix just until it forms a ball. Flatten the pastry into a disk, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 15-30 minutes or just until firm. You can also place in the freezer for about 10-15 minutes. 

Lightly butter and flour, or spray with a non-stick cooking spray, an 8-9 inch (20-23cm) tart pan. Once the pastry has chilled sufficiently, evenly pat onto the bottom and up the sides of the tart pan. While this is somewhat unconventional, this pastry is quite prone to cracks. This this is a better method. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the freezer for about 15 minutes. 

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 205 degrees C and place rack in center of oven. Lightly prick bottom of pastry crust with a fork (this will prevent the dough from puffing up as it bakes). Bake crust for 5 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 180 degrees C and continue to bake the crust for about 15 minutes or until crust is dry and lightly golden brown. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. 

If desired, seal the crust with an egg white glace. Let the crust cool for about 3-5 minutes. Then lightly beat one egg white and brush onto the bottom and sides of the warm pastry crust. 

Original Recipe
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