1 – 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup shortening (Crisco or a GREAT store-brand)
Butter (the size of a walnut)
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup very cold water beaten with 1/2 of an egg white
Mix the shortening, flour, and salt lightly. Add the liquid gradually.
Brush the crust with a little milk and use as your recipe directs.
A few tips:
1. If you can at all, use Crisco for this recipe – it’s a better quality and a lot softer than the cheaper brands. Save them for greasing pans, but use Crisco for baking.
2. Make sure your cold water is as cold as a baby polar bear’s behind. In fact, everything will go easier and will taste better if ALL of your ingredients are cool.
3. When working with a pastry, give it your undivided attention. Don’t try to do anything else at the time and don’t rush through the process. Give yourself plenty of time and enjoy the craft!
4. The lower crust (when applicable) should be placed in the pan so that it covers the surface smoothly. Be sure no air lurks beneath the surface – it’ll push the crust out of shape while it’s baking.
5. Folding the top crust over the lower crust before crimping will keep the juices in the pie rather than on your oven floor or racks.
6. When baking custard type pies (like pumpkin), bake at a high temperature for about ten minutes, then finish baking at a lower temperature. This prevents a nasty, soggy crust.