All Butter Pie Crust Recipe: Pie is Love

Even though the name of my blog is Drunk on Love in the Kitchen, it is not a true food blog. I don’t post recipes with gorgeous photographs. My writing centers around family, love, food, and pie. Pie definitely is a big part of my writing and my Facebook posts. Some of my readers have requested my crust recipe, so I decided to attempt a walk-through of the steps. It’s a food blog post without the glossy professional pics. I just snapped photos as I went through the motions.  Full disclosure: I often bake first thing in the morning. I would love to say I am fully dressed, hair all casually fluffed, a vintage apron jauntily tied around my waist, but usually I’m in my ancient robe and slippers with my hair looking more like Heat Miser.

My pie crust has evolved over the years. When I first began baking pies, I used a recipe that called for flour and vegetable oil. Yes, vegetable oil. You wrapped it all in plastic wrap and rolled it out. Honestly, it was disgusting. I later graduated to Crisco and then butter Crisco. A few years ago I saw Martha Stewart on one of the morning shows demonstrate her pie crust recipe using a food processor, a flour mixture, and butter. After a few of my own adjustments, it is the one I usually use. Sometimes I experiment with other recipes, but this is my standby. It always tastes great and it’s easy to assemble. I swear. 

Ingredients for single crust:
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 cup (one stick) cold, unsalted butter/ cut into small pieces
ice water
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (optional)

Ingredients for double crust:
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
4 teaspoons sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) cold, unsalted butter/cut into small pieces
ice water
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar (optional)

This morning I made a double crust apple pie, so that is what I am demonstrating. 

1. Begin by measuring 2 3/4 level cups of flour directly into the food processor. Then add 1 teaspoon salt and 4 teaspoons sugar. Pulse for just a few seconds to combine. 

Now comes the butter. I use two sticks for a double crust. Here is the key to good pie crust: your butter MUST BE COLD. Some recipes say to cut it up first and then place it in the freezer for a few minutes. I have done this, but not always. Today I stuck the sticks in the freezer while I gathered the ingredients. 

2. Cut up the butter into small pieces and place in processor with the flour mixture. Pulse until it resembles a grainy mixture. I have done this step by hand using a pastry cutter, but I prefer the food processor.

Now get your ice water ready. I plunk a few ice cubes into a small bowl of cold water. Sometimes I add a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar which makes the crust extra flaky, but I didn’t have any in the cupboard today so I skipped that step. It’s not necessary; it just adds a little something. 

3. Begin to add three tablespoons of ice water through the top chute of the food processor. Pulse a few times to mix the water into the ingredients. Continue to add a tablespoon at a time until the mixture begins to stick together as you pulse it. 

For a double crust recipe, I usually add ten to eleven tablespoons of water; a single crust requires about five to six tablespoons. Many recipes call for less water, but this seems to work for me.

4. Dump the mixture onto a floured surface. Gather into two flats balls and use plastic wrap to cover each one. I like to flatten each one in a disc so it is easier to roll out later. Place the discs in the refrigerator. 

Sometimes I make the dough early and leave it in the frig for the morning or even a few days. The dough will go bad after three days, so don’t forget about it. I also freeze pie dough and thaw it when I am ready to bake a pie.

5. When you are ready, take the discs out of the frig, unwrap, and roll out on a floured surface. 

If the cold dough resembles a frozen hockey puck, just bang on it with your rolling pin a few times. This seems to loosen it up and it also relieves some stuck up tension. It is like Whack-a-mole with pie dough instead of plastic rodents. Whack! 

6. Roll the dough as flat and even as you can. Sometimes I have to use my hands to keep it in some type of circle. It’s rather like playing with Playdough. Ha! Anyway, after you have a circle at least two inches wider that the edge of your pie tin, place one edge over the rolling pin and rotate the dough on it. Then place the rolling pin onto the pie plate and unroll it. 

This is kind of difficult to explain, so I have a few pictures that show the process.

There you go. Now fill it with yummy ingredients. If you are making a double crust pie, repeat the last steps to top it. You can make the edge any way you want. There are all kinds of fancy methods, but I just use my fingers to create a decorative edge.

So that is my pie crust recipe! It is not complicated, and I truly believe it is worth it if you want a delicious homemade pie. I told you I would share. Let me know if you try it. I would love to see how yours turns out. This one is going to my in-laws because pie is love.

“Good apple pies are a considerable part of our domestic happiness.” - Jane Austin