Over the last few weeks, Kelli and I have posted a variety of mostly-complete recipes for things like empanadas and apple pies. The missing piece of the equation has been our recipe for pastry dough or pie crust. Well, here it is!
2 1/4 cups GF flour mix
1 tsp salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) cold, unsalted butter
1 large egg
1/3 cup ice water
1 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar
- Sift the flour with salt into a large bowl. Cut the butter into half-inch cubes, and use your fingertips or a pastry cutter to blend the butter into the flour until the mix has pea-size butter lumps.
- In a separate bowl, beat together the egg, water and vinegar, using a fork. Then, add the wet ingredients to the flour mixture, stirring with a fork just until everything has incorporated.
- Turn the mixture out onto a lightly floured (GF) surface, and knead gently with the heel of your hand a few times. Don’t overwork the dough.
- Form the dough into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap, and chill in the refrigerator for 15 minutes.
A few additional tips about working with GF dough: With traditional pastry dough or pie crust, you’d let the dough chill in a refrigerator for at least one hour. This period of cold rest is meant to allow the gluten proteins to relax. Since GF dough doesn’t have gluten proteins, this chilling period isn’t strictly necessary. However, we find that allowing the GF dough to chill in the fridge for at least 15 minutes makes the dough much easier to work with.
GF dough is fragile, and can be frustrating to work with if you’re not patient. Whether you’re making a pie crust, forming empanadas, or using it for some other purpose, follow these rules of thumb: When you begin rolling out the dough, place it between two sheets of plastic wrap (both to protect the dough and to prevent it from sticking to and tearing on the counter). Once the dough is rolled out to the width of the plastic wrap, remove the top sheet and place it parallel to and slightly overlapping beneath the first sheet. Then continue to roll out the dough across the second sheet to your desired thickness. If you’re making empanadas, you can cut out the discs directly from here. If you’re making a pie, leave the dough on the plastic wrap, invert it into your pie tin or Pyrex, and then peel away the plastic wrap.