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pie crust

daherstol's picture

pie crust (post #71558)


I baked some pies over Thanksgiving and had terrible results!  I used a new recipe using all butter for the crusts (previously have used all shortening) and when baked, either blind or with filling, the best way to describe what happened would be to say that it sort of melted, oozing butter as it baked.  Any ideas of what might have gone wrong?  It was 2 cups of flour to 12 T butter.   What a huge dissappointment! 

Gretchen8's picture

I can't really say what may (post #71558, reply #1 of 6)

I can't really say what may have happened to your dough. Apparently this recipe is wonderful--the vodka keeps gluten from forming so it remains tender and flaky.

Cook's Illustrated's Foolproof Pie Dough

When we talked to Cook's Illustrated publisher Chris Kimball about the November 2007 issue of the magazine, we asked what recipes really stood out in it this year. This pie crust is one of them, he said. "It's a brilliant recipe," Kimball said. "The secret ingredient in it? Vodka."


serves one 9-inch double-crust pie ,

  • 2 1/2 cups (12 1/2 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 1/2 cup cold vegetable shortening, cut into 4 pieces
  • 1/4 cup cold vodka
  • 1/4 cup cold water



    Process 1 1/2 cups flour, salt, and sugar in food processor until combined, about 2 one-second pulses. Add butter and shortening and process until homogeneous dough just starts to collect in uneven clumps, about 15 seconds (dough will resemble cottage cheese curds and there should be no uncoated flour). Scrape bowl with rubber spatula and redistribute dough evenly around processor blade. Add remaining cup flour and pulse until mixture is evenly distributed around bowl and mass of dough has been broken up, 4 to 6 quick pulses. Empty mixture into medium bowl.



    Sprinkle vodka and water over mixture. With rubber spatula, use folding motion to mix, pressing down on dough until dough is slightly tacky and sticks together. Divide dough into two even balls and flatten each into 4-inch disk. Wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 45 minutes or up to 2 days.


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daherstol's picture

Thank you for the recipe I'll (post #71558, reply #2 of 6)

Thank you for the recipe I'll give it a try.  It was a really odd experience with the crust, I thought maybe it was the butter.  They say that different brands can have varying amounts of water, but can't really imagine that was the problem.

Pielove's picture

butter ooze... (post #71558, reply #3 of 6)

Hey dahersol,

Did you pre-chill your crusts?  Also, perhaps the size of the butter pieces was too big?  I'm intrigued by the vodka crust recipe, but I never have vodka around the house-- crust might taste wierd with gin!


how to cook lamb's picture

never tried vodka before on (post #71558, reply #4 of 6)

never tried vodka before on my crusts.this is something new.trying it before the holidays.

daherstol's picture

I froze the crusts before (post #71558, reply #5 of 6)

I froze the crusts before baking.  And I don't think that butter pieces were too big.  Really don't know what happened.  I too am curious about the vodka recipe--I'll be giving that a try next week or so.  Thanks for the help!

Pielove's picture

wierd! (post #71558, reply #6 of 6)

Hmm, that is interesting-- over in another forum (, one of the cooks suggested using white wine or dilute vinegar in your piecrust-- adds some flavor and the acid helps tenderize the gluten.  I don't think that will help with the butter weeping problem though.  I've had butter come out of scones and biscuits before-- I wonder what is up with that, perhaps the butter bits are not adequately contained by the starchy dough.  

Let me know if the vodka crust works for you-- I'm happy with my standard piecrust method, so I'm unwilling to mess with success!