Sunday, September 13, 2009

Gluten-free Pie Crust: The Last Pie Crust Recipe You'll Ever Need


I will admit that I have been keeping this pie crust recipe a secret for quite awhile now. My apologies. You see, it's one of those recipes that's a family recipe, which comes from hubby's very French grandfather. He's an amazing cook, and he cares for his recipes like they are his children. He gave me permission to post it, so I am.

I promise that you will never need another pie crust recipe again. You can throw all your others out and make this your fail-safe stand by. Gluten-free and non-GF alike. The differences between GF and regular are pretty minor.

Never a more light, flaky, and buttery pie crust have you eaten. I swear it on it on my mother's eventual grave (hopefully many, many years from now). It's good for fruit pies, meat pies (i.e. chicken or pork), and for custard pies. Behold, I give you Pépère's pie crust.


Pépère's Pie Crust

4 cups GF all-purpose flour (you can easily substitute in regular flour if you prefer)
1 TBSP salt
1 TBSP sugar
2 cups Butter Crisco
1 egg, plus enough water to fill 1 cup
1 TBSP lemon juice

1 egg, beaten for egg wash

Directions:
Sift and/or mix dry ingredients. With a pastry blender, work Butter Crisco into the flour. Mix until it resembles course corn meal. Make a well in the center. Pour in the remaining ingredients. Mix and fold with a fork/pastry blender until the mixtures leaves the sides of the bowl to form a ball (you may have to sprinkle in more flour to get the right consistency). Scrape the bowl and make a ball. Cover and chill for two hours.

GF-Rolling Instructions:
Cut ball into four quarters. Re-refrigerate the unused dough. Shape smaller dough into ball (do not over handle). Place between two sheets of plastic wrap. Squash into a thick circle with your hands. Roll with rolling pin to a thin 8-10 inch circle. Gently peel away top plastic wrap layer and set aside. Place the pie crust into a pie pan, plastic wrap side up, and secure to shape of pan. Gently peel away second plastic wrap. Pour in pie filling for double crusted pies, or bake at 425F for 12-15 minutes for single crusted pies.

Repeat rolling process for double-crusted pie tops. Gently press the two dough together to seal filling into the pie. Use a pastry brush to coat top with an egg wash (do not skip this step). Poke holes in the top with a fork/knife. Bake pie for 45 minutes at 350F.

Regular Rolling Instructions:
Cut ball into thirds. Re-refrigerate the unused dough. Shape smaller dough into ball (do not over handle). Sprinkle flour onto rolling mat/counter and rolling pin. Squash dough into a thick circle with your hands. Roll with rolling pin to a thin 8-10 inch circle. Place the pie crust into a pie pan and secure to shape of pan. Pour in pie filling for double crusted pies, or bake at 425F for 12-15 minutes for single crusted pies.

Repeat rolling process for double-crusted pie tops. Gently press the two dough together to seal filling into the pie. Use a pastry brush to coat top with an egg wash (do not skip this step). Poke holes in the top with a fork/knife. Bake pie for 45 minutes at 350F.

*Yields four GF crusts or three regular crusts
**Dough and
finished un-baked pies can be frozen for up to six months

34 comments:

Hannah said...

Wow that looks amazing! And great photography - what kind of camera do you use?

Ali-kat said...

Thanks, Hannah. I use a Nikon D40, which I then move into Adobe Photoshop, where I put on all the finishing touches.

brennarella said...

Thank you so much for the recipe! It worked really well. :)

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Natalie said...

looks wonderful! Can't wait to try it for Thanksgiving pies!

AllergyMama said...

Is there any substitute for the egg wash? My son is allergic to both wheat and eggs. Thanks!

Ali-kat said...

@AllergyMama -- You can skip the egg wash if you want. It's not a necessary step. It's what makes the crust golden and flaky on top, but the crust will work just fine without the egg.

Ronnie said...

Do you still need to add the xanthan gum to the GF flour?

Ali-kat said...

@Ronnie - I skip the xanthan gum for this recipe, but I add it to all the others. The butter Crisco and egg seem to hold it together just enough. It will still flake and fall apart a little bit, but the overall texture is better without the xanthan gum for this pie crust.

Anonymous said...

Will butter work instead of shortening? Most shortening is made from corn oil and I have major issues with corn related products
thanks -treblerose81

Ali-kat said...

@Treblerose81 - You can use butter, but the results will be a little different. I have tried it that way before in a pinch. I am not knowledgeable enough about the differences in the kinds of fats to give you a better explanation, I'm sorry.

Anonymous said...

Is it supposed to be 1 or 2 cups of Crisco? I used two but it didn't resemble a course cornmeal texture and I couldn't use 1cup of water with that much Crisco or it would have been total mush.

Anonymous said...

About to try this :) I'm so excited for pie crust that my digestive system can handle!

Ali-kat said...

Use two cups of butter Crisco. Keep adding flour a little bit at a time until a ball starts to form and you get that slight marbling affect with the color. You'll know it's right when it's pulling itself away from the sides as you mix the little extra bits of flour.

Gretchen said...

I'm so confused; I'm trying the recipe and having the same results... I'm already up to 5.5 cups of flour, and the crisco keeps incorporating the flour! No cornmeal effect at all! If I add an egg and water to this, how on EARTH is it going to become a pie crust? It's going to be mud... I've already got about $10 worth of flour in my bowl. Really, really worried here.

Ali-kat said...

See above comment. As long as it is pulling away from the sides of the bowl and forming a ball, you're good. GF pie crust tends to be wetter than traditional.

Laura said...

Ah!!! After years of trying and tears, this was the first pie crust that actually worked perfectly for me.

I used:

3-1/3 c. Bob's Red Mill AP GF Flour
2/3 c. "Gluten Free Gluten"

And I used Earth Balance vegan butter sticks, because that is what I had in the freezer. Also, flax+water instead of egg to make it fully vegan.

Perfect pie success!! Thank you!

Daro said...

Wonderful crust. I made a 7 cup peach pie and had to bake it 16 minutes longer, but it is the best, flakiest gluten free pie crust I have EVER made. I will keep this recipe as one of my favorites. Thanks so much for sharing this.

Anonymous said...

I used 1 and 1/3 cup crisco and 4 tbsp softened butter combined them and it came out perfect.

Jerrie said...

This made a wonderful pie crust and I froze the rest in rolled up Saran Wrap and used them later. All were good!

Johanna said...

I share your recipe with all my glutie friends. I tend to use 100% butter instead of crisco and I hand cut with a pastry cutter instead of a processor. I also found that using a pastry cloth and rolling pin cover helps sooo much when rolling it out. Super smooth results. Works like a dream! I made a cherry pie last year for the fourth and didn't tell my friends it was gluten free. They could only roll their eyes with joy after the first mouthful. Thanks so much for sharing!!!

Anonymous said...

Thanks, sounds easy enough for me. I'm not much of a cook.:))

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