This is a basic Pate Brisee recipe that I created for savory pies, tarts and quiches. It will make top and bottom pastries for a double-crusted pie. Alternatively, you can make a half recipe for a single-crusted quiche or tart. I especially use Pate Brisee for my favorite savory pie, the Emilian Spinach Pie (Erbazzone), posted on this blog on May 12, 2010. Whenever I serve my guests one of these tarts they always compliment the delicate and tasty crust surrounding the filling.

Active prep time: 40 minutes
Inactive prep time: 10 minutes (for chilling)
Makes: Pastry for One 2-crusted Savory Pie or Tart

2 1/2 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon sea salt
Dash ground black pepper
7 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch squares
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
6 to 8 tablespoons cold water
One 9-inch pie plate

1. Combine dry ingredients in a 12-cup mixing bowl.

2. Using a pastry cutter or a fork, blend in the butter until mixture is uniform and resembles small peas.

3. Mix in the eggs. Add water, one tablespoon at a time, mixing gently after each addition. As soon as mixture amalgamates and dough is formed, divide it in half, shaping each piece into a ball.

4. Wrap each dough ball in plastic wrap and freeze 10 minutes. Transfer one dough ball to refrigerator and roll out the other.

To roll out pastry dough:

1. With lightly floured hands, flatten dough to a 6-inch circle.

2. Place dough between two floured 16-inch long waxed paper sheets.

3. Gently roll out dough to a 14 or 15-inch circle. To prevent sticking, peel off the waxed paper sheets and dust each side of the pastry sheet with flour two or three times while working.

4. Peel off the top waxed paper sheet. With one hand underneath bottom sheet and the other on top of exposed pastry, quickly flip pastry over and into a 9-inch buttered pie plate.

5. Peel off the second sheet. Gently fit the pastry into pan sides and, using a fork, randomly make holes in the pastry. Trim edges to a one-inch overhang and set aside.

6. Repeat rolling instructions with other dough ball; set aside. For filling, follow instructions of pie, tart or quiche that you are making.

7. Peel off the top waxed paper sheet from rolled out pastry.

8. Quickly flip pastry over filling and peel off second waxed paper sheet.

9. Trim pastry edges to a one-inch overhang; pinch and seal edges.

10. Make random holes over top of sealed pie.

11. At this point, follow remaining baking instructions for pie, tart or quiche that you are making.

Text ©2010 Nancy DeLucia Real