Basic Pie Crust



  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 T. sugar
  • 3/4 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1 large egg, well beaten
  • 3 T. ice cold water, or more as needed


Sift flour, salt, and sugar into medium-size mixing bowl. Add shortening and work it in with your fingertips until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Combine egg with cold water and add to dough mixture. Work dough with your hands until it forms a smooth ball. (You may have to add another tablespoon of cold water.) Wrap dough with plastic wrap and chill for 1 hour. Remove dough from refrigerator and place it on lightly floured work surface. With lightly floured rolling pin, roll out to about 12 inches in diameter and 1/4 inch thick. Carefully transfer it to a 9-inch pie pan. Flute edges. Makes one 9-inch pie crust.
In hot weather, it’s best to chill the flour and the vegetable shortening before making pie crust. It is so warm and damp in south Louisiana, where these Mardi Gras and Cajun recipes originated, that cool ingredients help to make the pie crust flakier and not tough. Never, never overwork pastry. Be gentle and you will have a flaky, tender crust.


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