Monday, October 8, 2007

Demented piecrust

Now, I've been making pie crusts since I was 15 (Dark Ages) and I've made so many that the recipe is firmly embedded into my brain. It's delicious, too, so no other pie crust compares. That being said, I am not necessarily set in my ways and am willing to experiment when some new version comes along.

So, when Cook's Illustrated described their vodka-laced pie dough, I thought I'd give it a shot. (oops, no pun intended) Now, the dough was definitely softer/moister and much more short than my standard dough, but watch out for the fumes! I let the dough rest in the fridge overnight. True to the description, the dough does require more flour when rolling it out, and it needs a slightly different touch, since it is so soft. I put 2 pie shells, 2 tart shells, and some miscellaneous dough pieces in the oven to partially bake. (Hey, fledgling -- the dough pieces were ALL mine this time -- woo hoo!) When time was up, I removed the various shells, BUT to my horror, the darn things had shrunk! As I said above, I've made hundreds of pie shells and rarely do they shrink, so I will have to analyze the dough and process and see where the problem is.

On the plus side, the dough is very tender (I would guess because of the shortness rather than the vodka), and even a third roll produced a tender, flaky product.

Now, just for the record, the 2 pies turned out just fine, despite the demented-looking crust. #1 was my 4-color sweet pepper quiche; #2 was the Crunch/Custardy Peach Tart from Dorie Greenspan's book (p.346). Perhaps I will feel brave enough to take photos later today.

I think, though, that I will go back to my regular pie crust recipe, although I may experiment with the vodka in that recipe and see what happens. Unless the fumes get to me first......

1 comment:

Allison Mays said...

I say: forget the pie crust and drink the vodka!!

The peach thing sounds yummy. You need to come visit and like stay for 2 months. Helen keeps asking me if we can get you to move here.