Monday, 11 August 2014

Sweet and Savoury Pie Class: Peach Pie with Flaky Butter Pastry

Our second attempt at pastry-making of the evening was a flaky butter crust.   I learned a few tips and techniques:

- Try grating butter instead of dicing or using a pastry cutter
- Refrigerate the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, salt)
- Keep ice cubes in a glass of water to keep it absolutely chilled
- Stainless steel counter tops are amazing
- Rolling tips:  Roll out and back, turn, roll out and back, turn and so on to avoid your dough sticking to the surface
- When ready to move your rolled out pastry into the pan, roll the pastry up onto the rolling pin, then roll it out onto the pie plate

I wasn't pleased with this dough when it went into the fridge to rest.  I was trying to follow the instructors directions, which were different then what I would normally do when making pastry.  But what is the point of taking a class if not to learn something new?  My pastry dough was dry and crumbly when I finally got it into a sort of disc-like shape.  Not enough water, I think.  Anyways, the instructor came over and said it was over-worked and to leave it.  Oh well.  Once it had chilled in the fridge,  I was careful to not use too much flour in the process of rolling it out.  To my great surprise, this was the flakiest pastry I have ever made - you could see the layers as you cut into it - and it was delicious as well.  A winner.  I must have done something right, after all.

Pastry (Flaky) (used for Peach Pie)
Recipe from The Culinary Studio

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp salt
½ tsp sugar
1 cup cold, unsalted butter
¼ to ½ cup ice water

In a bowl, combine flour, salt and sugar.
Using a box grater, grate butter into the flour mixture
Toss together lightly, using your fingers
Add water, first ¼ cup, and then more, few tablespoons at a time, lightly kneading until the dough comes together
On a lightly floured surface, divide dough in half and shape into disks
Wrap in plastic and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour

Peach Filling
Recipe from The Culinary Studio

6 cups of sliced peaches
½ cup sugar
1/3 cup flour
Juice and zest of one lemon
¼ tsp of cinnamon

Toss all of the ingredients together and fill a 9” unbaked pie crust. Cover with top crust. Egg wash and create steam holes.

Bake in a 425°F oven for 20 minutes, then reduce heat to 350°F for a further 30-40 minutes until the crust is a deep golden brown. Let stand for at least 30 minutes before cutting.

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