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Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Shortcrust pastry

Shortcrust pastry is a type of pastry often used for the base of a tart or pie. It does not puff up during baking because it usually contains no leavening agent. It is possible to make shortcrust pastry with self-raising flour, however. Shortcrust pastry can be used to make both sweet and savory pies such as apple pie, quiche or lemon meringue. Shortcrust Pastry is a mixture of flour - usually all purpose/plain flour and a fat, either butter, lard or a mixture of both. These are bound together with either cold water or with egg for a richer pastry. 

Shortcrust pastry

1. 7 oz/200g all purpose/plain flour (Use equal quantities of all-purpose flour and cake flour for a lighter pastry.)
2. pinch of salt
3. 4 oz/ 110g butter, cubed or an equal mix of butter and lard
4. 2-3 tbsp cold water

This quantity makes 10 oz/300g pastry.

1. Place the flour, butter and salt into a large clean bowl.
2. Rub the butter into the flour with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs, working as quickly as possible to prevent the dough becoming warm.
3. Add the water to the mixture and using a cold knife stir until the dough binds together, add more cold water a teaspoon at a time if the mixture is too dry.
4. Wrap the dough in Saran wrap/Clingfilm and chill for a minimum of 15 minutes, up to 30 minutes.

Mango Tart
The dough can also be made in a food processor by mixing the flour, butter and salt in the bowl of the processor on a pulse setting. When the mixture resembles breadcrumbs, add the water, slowly, through the funnel until the dough comes together in a ball. Wrap in Saran wrap/ Clingfilm and chill as above.

Preparation Time:-
15 minutes.

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