Tender Shortcrust Pastry

This is my shortcrust pastry of choice (updated Oct 29, 2013). It makes a tender crust with enough structural integrity to hold itself together, a mild flavor, and a texture that is soft next to the filling, with a crust that will snap off, and a top crust that you can tap.

Cabbage Pie

Gluten free pastry on a cabbage pie, served with garlicky green beans and brown cashew gravy.

To use, either roll thinly between two sheets of parchment paper (and transfer to the baking dish on the bottom parchment paper, or carefully transfer by hand), or crumble into the greased pie plate and press into place with knuckles. The amount of work done to the dough affects the texture, so make sure to knead the dough before using (~30 seconds in the food processor). Unlike wheat dough, this kneading won’t turn the pastry tough, but it will make it just sturdy enough to handle like wheat pastry.

I’ve made this with corn flour (not starch (wrong stuff) or meal (too coarse)) as the second flour, and on a separate occasion I used quinoa. The version with quinoa did have a slight quinoa flavor (which is a little odd, in pastry), though it wasn’t prominent enough to stop my husband from eating the pie! Nutritionally speaking, the quinoa version was better, of course.

Note that you can use un-blanched almond flour, if you want to, but the pastry comes out with a less fine texture, and a browner color.

4 oz blanched almond flour (~1 cup)
2 1/2 oz fine ground corn flour or quinoa flour
1 1/2 oz corn or potato starch
1/3 tsp salt
2 tsp xanthan gum
1/2 tsp baking powder
2 oz cold margarine
3 oz sugar (if making sweet pastry)
1 egg

Put all dry ingredients (except the sugar) in a food processor. Process briefly to combine.

Pulse the margarine into the dry ingredients so the mixture looks a bit like breadcrumbs.

Add the remaining ingredients, and process for about 30 seconds to develop the xanthan gum.

Add sufficient water (~1 tbsp) to make the dough pliant such that it doesn’t crumble when you roll it out and try to pick it up, but not so much that it gets sticky. 

Roll out as discussed, above. Cook for about 30 minutes at 380F in your chosen dish.

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6 thoughts on “Tender Shortcrust Pastry

  1. Diana says:

    I am missing pie so much… do you think this crust could be made without the egg?

    • Yes, I think it can, I just can’t find where I talked about it on the blog. Give me a day or so, and I’ll double check what I thought I did to make it vegan. My husband has been asking for Bakewell tart recently, so I can do both at the same time. 🙂

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