How to make shortcrust pastry by Leiths

By
Eve O'Sullivan
Added
05 May, 2015

We’re thrilled to welcome four new Leiths School of Food and Wine titles to Cooked in the next few weeks; How to Cook Pastry, How to Cook Cakes, How to Cook Bread and How to Cook Desserts. And what better way to celebrate than by learning a new skill?

In the first of ten exclusive videos, you can discover how to make pastry like a pro, then follow these tips to make sure every batch is failsafe. 



TIPS


•         It is essential to keep pastry cool as you make it to prevent the butter melting before it is properly incorporated. Work with cool ingredients in a cool kitchen and use a knife or food mixer to start working the butter in to the flour.  If the fat starts to melt to much or become greasy chill it for a few minutes. This can be done at any stage.


•         The most important stage of chilling is when the pastry has been rolled out and is in its final shape before baking. This can be done in the freezer if you are in a hurry.


•         Most pastries can be frozen very successfully when raw, often with filling in too, and then baked from frozen.


•         When rolling out pastry encourage it to gently expand, not stretch. Use a loose grip and avoid applying too much pressure.


•         Pastry can be rolled out between two sheets of clingfilm or baking parchment. This is particularly useful when pastry is crumbly and prone to falling apart.


•         To repair a hole or crack, soften a little leftover pastry and plug the holes. Return to a lower shelf of the oven for 5 – 10 minutes to cook the raw pastry.

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