I have to confess when baking pies I usually save time by purchasing pie crust, but sometimes I make it from scratch. My mind goes back to childhood days and my mom’s pies. She made her own pie crust. She taught me how to make it.
This is her recipe for an 8 or 9-inch double pie crust.
1 ½ cups sifted flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup shortening
4 to 5 tablespoons water
Stir in 4 tablespoons of water. Add another tablespoon of water if ingredients are too dry. (I always need the extra tablespoon of water.)
Divide the dough in half.
Sprinkle clean counter surface lightly with flour. Rub a little flour over a rolling pin to prevent it from sticking to the dough.
Plop the dough in the middle of the floured surface. Flatten it a bit with your hand to get it started. Then take the rolling pin and, starting from the center with each stroke, roll smoothly toward the side. Alternate strokes to each side and top and bottom.
Roll dough until it is the right size for your pie dish. Layers will be thin. I’ve found that it helps to gently fold the crust in half before picking it up and arranging in on the pie dish.
If you’re like me, you have a little more on one side than another. After the crust is in place, follow the edges with a fork to cut off the excess.
Poke a few holes in the bottom crust and around the sides using a fork.
Hint: Save the excess dough to clean the flour off the counter. That’s another hint from my mom.
-Sandra Merville Hart