Well, I have tried before, but not with any success. I had a go at my grandmother's homemade pastry quite a few christmases ago, and it was a disaster. But I have really wanted to make it work, and something gave me the urge over the weekend to try Annabel Langbein's sweet pastry.
So. Pastry. It is quick and simple, and I made mine in the mixer (I'm pretty sure I tried it by hand last time which was probably the problem). I swapped sugar for glucose of course, which will make it less sweet. And I made half of the recipe below, as I like to do when I'm experimenting. We decided to make little pies in our large muffin tins, but of course you can do anything you like.
You need to bake pastry blind before you turn it in to your own specific masterpiece, so you partially bake it, weighing it down with official baking beans, or using rice if you don't have any beans. Once that's done, you add your fruit or other filling and bake again.
Below are my instructions using Annabel's recipe:
360g butter, softened
3/4 cup glucose or sugar
3 1/3 cups flour
Beat the softened butter and sugar together until creamy, then add the egg and combine.
Gently mix in the flour and salt.
Grease your pie tin or muffin tins, then roll the dough out til it is about 5mm thick. I suggest rolling it straight on to a lightly floured bench top (work surface), and be prepared to regularly dust your rolling pin with more flour. Shape the dough in to your pie tin, or use a bowl to cut rounds that will fit in to the muffin tins.
Place in to the fridge to chill for 10 minutes, and heat the oven to 160 degrees.
Line the dough with baking paper, then drop baking beans or rice on top of the baking paper, and place in the oven for 12 - 15 minutes. It will be ready when you lift the paper off and it doesn't stick (but watch also for browning edges).
In the meantime, I cooked apple and boysenberries with a drizzle of honey. Place the fruit or other filling in to the pastry cases, and bake for another 10 minutes.
(If you are making a large pie you probably want a topping. You will have used half for the base, so place the other half over your filling, and brush with milk before baking).
This post is dedicated to a friend, who loves Annabel almost as much as I love my friend. And who celebrates whenever I have a good day.
|Reuben's drawing of their afternoon picnic (yes, in a cupboard - see above).|