Recently I baked 6 pies. 2 for home, 1 for a friend, and 3 for a local auction to raise money for a great family. (Read about that here At A News Cafe) I had a few requests for the crust recipe. I am old fashioned when it comes to making any sort of pie or tart crust. I prefer to make it by hand, unless I am making 10+ pies, I will always use my favorite kitchen tool, my hands, to make a crust. Below is a the easy Pate Brisee that you will find is used to make the finest French tarts.
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 sticks of cold unsalted butter, cut into bits
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
In a large bowl blend the flour, the butter, sugar, and the salt until the mixture resembles meal like the photo above. Add 3 tablespoons ice water, toss the mixture until the water is incorporated, and form the dough into a ball. Knead the dough lightly with the heel of the hand against a smooth surface for a few seconds to distribute the fat evenly and re-form it into a ball. Dust the dough with flour and chill it, wrapped in plastic wrap or wax paper for at least 30 minutes.