Monday, July 12, 2010

Experiment 1, Part 1 - pie crust

My week of unexpected leave is over, and it's back to the daily curatorial grind - starting with reborrowing all 20-odd of my library books when the museum library reopens tomorrow. I'm foreseeing several trips down the corridor for that one... Anyway, I managed to conquer all three of my nemeses. Okay, more like two and a half - I only tried the cake decorating on cupcakes, not on a full scale cake. But I figure I've done enough that when I next make a cake, I'll be able to do it justice!

Anyway, let's start at the beginning - apple pie. Due to the number of photos, I'll be doing this in three parts. Let's start with making the pie crust.

Here's what you'll need. And yes, I do my capital Fs backwards. Don't judge me! ;) :

Start by putting 1 cup of plain flour and 1/2 cup of self raising flour into your handy dandy food processor. I love this baby. It makes life soooo much easier. I have no doubt that if I'd had to make my pastry by hand, it wouldn't have turned out anywhere near as well!

Add 1/4 cup of cornflour:

And 1/4 cup of custard powder:

And don't be disturbed when you bang the 1/4 cup measure in the sink, and this happens:

It's just the tartrazine and the sunset yellow in the custard powder coming out when you mix it with water...

Next, add 1 tablespoon of caster sugar. Or, if you're me, you read the recipe wrong, add 1/4 cup of caster sugar, and only realise a week and a half later when you check the recipe while writing the blog post. Whoops............. It didn't really make a difference though, in my opinion! It just needed a little more liquid.

Chop 100g of cold butter:

And add it to the food processor:

Pulse the mixture until it resembles breadcrumbs:

Then take the egg and a handy egg separator. Okay, so you *could* just do it between the halves of the shell. But I'm kind of uncoordinated. So an egg separator is a much better option...

Dump the egg into the separator. Save the white for later:

Aaaaand dump the yolk into the food processor with the dry ingredients:

Pulse the ingredients, then gradually add cold water until the ingredients just come together. The recipe says around 1/3 cup, but I found it took a little more than that - probably because of all that extra sugar........ :S

Form the dough into a ball, and dump it onto a floured surface. In this case, the bench.

Knead the dough until it's smooth - it didn't take very long. Only a couple of minutes.

These little bits of orange - courtesy of the tartrazine and sunset yellow - remind me of my gran. She used to make the most amazing yoyos, and they clearly had custard powder in them, because they always had little bits of orange in them too:

Once the dough is smooth, wrap it in Glad Wrap (cling film to the Poms and saran wrap to North Americans!), and stick it in the fridge for at least half an hour.

And that's it for making the pie crust! Next up, the filling...
K :) xx

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