(*Three if you count salt, and four if you glaze with diluted simple syrup at the end).
I just spent a long weekend in a little patch of paradise near Jericho, Vermont. There was a memorial service being held for my husband's Aunt Marge, and extended family came in from all over the country. I could go on and on about the evening campfires or the night swimming in the nearby pond, but this is a recipe headnote after all, so I will stick to the pies. There was a lot of baking going on between the volley ball games and the beer runs, and Marge's younger sister Rachel - who for some reason is known as Teddy - was teaching her grand-nieces how to make proper pies. When I asked whether she used butter or shortening in her dough she answered "neither."
The gorgeous double-crusted berry pies and single-crusted pumpkins were made with her canola oil dough recipe, which couldn't be easier she said because you just mix it in a bowl and roll it between plastic sheets cut from grocery/shopping bags. I was stunned at how good this crust tasted. So I wrote down the proportions and leave it here for anyone who is vegan, or out of butter or shortening, or is always on the lookout for different ways of doing things. —Sadassa_Ulna
dough for large single-crust pie
unbleached white flour
canola or other vegetable oil
In This Recipe
Dump flour, then salt, into a large bowl; stir a little. Make into a mound then form a well in the center.
Add the ice water to the well, then the oil. Stir with a fork just until blended. Use a spatula to scoop into a ball.
Roll dough between parchment paper or plastic wrap or use Teddy's method: she cuts the handles off of grocery-store shopping bags then slits up the sides and snips off the bottom seams to make sheets to roll the dough between.
Use as you would for any pie. Double the recipe for pies with a top crust. For a nice glaze, mix 2 Tbsp. sugar with 2 Tbsp. water in a mug and microwave for minute; use a pastry brush to brush glaze onto top crust about five minutes before end of bake time.
Growing up I was the world's pickiest eater, that is, until my children were born. Karma. Neither of my parents were much into cooking; it was the height of eating fat-free or anything with oat bran added. I taught myself some basics, mostly baking, following the guidelines of a well-worn copy of Joy of Cooking. I was a ballet dancer and a teacher suggested I lose weight. As I began reading about diet and nutrition I became interested in natural foods, which led to a job at a macrobiotic natural foods market in Center City Philadelphia; this was way before Whole Foods came to the area. I learned a lot about food in general. I ate strictly vegan for a while, although I don't now, but I still like it when a recipe can taste great without butter or bacon! In short, my approach to cooking is idiosyncratic, and I don't know very much about cooking meat or proper technique. I love to bake and I am still working on expanding my palate and my repertoire. The hardest part is getting the whole family to try new things!
So aside from my food status, I am an architect who likes to garden and play music. I'm married with two kids, and I hope to get a dog someday.