Classic Pie Crust


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup solid vegetable shortening, cut into pieces
  • 5 tablespoons ice water
  1. Combine the flour and salt in a food processor; pulse off and on to mix. Add the shortening: pulse on and off until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
  2. With the processor running, trickle in 4 tablespoons ice water through the feed tube, just until the dough gathers together. (If the dough seems dry, add up to 1 tablespoon more of ice water, 1/2 teaspoon at a time.) Remove the dough from the machine, divide in half. Flatten each half with your palm to form a disk. Wrap in plastic and chill in refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
  3. Remove 1 disk of dough from the refrigerator. Unwrap it and roll on a lightly floured work surface or between 2 sheets of wax paper to form a circle about 1/8-inch thick and 2 inches larger than the pie plate. Work quickly, as the dough can become sticky. Use a spatula to help lift the dough and fold it loosely in half, then into quarters. Gently transfer it to the pie late, placing the corner of the dough in the center of the plate. Open up the dough and press it lightly into the plate to fit. If the dough should tear, just press it together gently. Trim the dough, leaving 1-inch overhang. If making a single crust pie, turn the edge under and flute it decoratively.
  4. Repeat the rolling process for a top crust or another bottom crust. (For a top crust, the circle should be 1-inch larger than the pie plate; for a bottom, 2 inches larger.)
  5. Follow your favorite recipe for filling and baking.


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