Two-crust pies

Two-crust pies

By
From
Encyclopedia of Food and Cookery

A two-crust pie can be made with both top and bottom crusts of short or flaky pastry, or it can be made with short pastry underneath and flaky pastry on top.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
see method for ingredients

Method

  1. Divide pastry into two portions, one a little larger than the other. Roll out larger portion about 3 mm thick, and cut a shape which will line the dish with about 2 cm overhang all round. Lift pastry on a lightly floured rolling pin and fit it into the dish, easing it in loosely without stretching it. Use fingertips or a small ball of pastry, dipped in flour, to press crust against the dish so that no air is trapped between.
  2. If filling is very juicy, brush bottom and sides of crust with lightly beaten egg, egg white or, for a sweet pie, melted jam, and allow it to dry for a few minutes. Place filling in dish.
  3. Roll other portion of pastry about 5 mm thick to a shape about 2.5 cm larger all round than top of dish. Moisten rim of bottom crust with water. Lift top crust onto a lightly floured rolling pin and lay it loosely over the dish. Press top and bottom crusts firmly together. Trim off overhang with a sharp knife.
  4. With the back of a finger, press round the pastry lid edge, so that it is pushed out slightly beyond the rim of the dish. Then ‘knock up’ the edges and flute or mark. Cut a few small slits in pastry and pierce through centre. Glaze and bake as directed in recipe.
  5. To decorate a pie: Pastry-covered pies may be decorated with flowers, leaves, tassels or tiny fruits made from the pastry trimmings. Secure to the crust with beaten egg or egg white, and glaze. Cover decorations with foil if they are browning too much before pie is ready.
  6. Pastry fruits: Shape several tiny pastry balls and join to make a cluster of berries; or shape small apples, pears, etc. Poke holes in the tops with a fine skewer and insert pastry stems or leaves.
  7. Pastry leaves: Cut pastry into strips, cut diagonally across into diamonds and trim to leaf shapes. Make veins with the blunt edge of a knife and arrange on pie.
  8. Pastry rose: Cut 3 pastry strips about 1 × 5 cm. Roll one strip into a cylinder, wrap a second strip loosely round it and pinch base in to open out top; then wrap the third strip round from the opposite side and pinch base in again.
  9. Pastry tassel: Cut a strip about 8 × 2.5 cm. Cut this strip across like a fringe to about two-thirds of its width, then roll up lengthways, pinching the base together. Place in centre of pie and open out the fringe.
  10. Lattice-top pies: A lattice top is a decorative finish to a pie with an attractive filling such as fruit. Roll out dough and cut strips 1–2 cm wide. Arrange the strips on the filling in a crisscross pattern.
  11. Alternatively, weave strips as follows: lay half the strips across the dish, about 2 cm apart. Fold back every second strip halfway. Place a strip at right angles across the unfolded strips. Unfold the doubled strips and fold back the alternate ones. Lay another cross strip about 2 cm from the first. Continue, working towards the edge, then repeat the process, starting from the other side of the centre line. Strips should be loosely arranged, without stretching.
  12. When the whole pie is latticed, dampen the ends of the strips and press them to the bottom crust edge or to the edge of the dish. Fold edge of bottom crust over ends of strips, or, for a one-crust pie, cover ends with a strip of pastry round the dampened rim of the dish.
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