Salty Cardamom Pie Crust
Cardamom is a spice with a complex citrusy, minty, herbal, spicy flavor that goes well with both sweet and savory dishes. It’s a staple in Indian cooking and Scandanavian baked goods. It’s a more elevated cousin to cinnamon, nutmeg, and ginger. Cardamom flavor pairs well with:
Sweet: apples, apricots, bananas, chocolate, citrus -- oranges and lemons, coffee, dates, pears, pistachios, sweet potatoes, walnuts and yogurt
Savory: beef, chicken, chickpeas, curries, duck, fish, lamb, legumes, peas, pork, root vegetables
I made this Salty Cardamom Pie Crust to pair with my award-winning Seville Orange Marmalade Pie. It also pairs perfectly with my Dark Chocolate Meringue Pie recipe. The extra saltiness in the crust helps to balance the sweetness in the pies. Also, see how my mistake adding 1 tablespoon salt instead of 1 teaspoon of salt to the Nilla Wafers in the Banana-y Banana Pudding recipe ended up being a beautiful mistake!
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Salty Cardamom Pie Crust
Time to Prepare: 3 hours total (1-hour prep + 1-hour dough chill time + 1-hour blind baking)
Makes one crust (if you need a top crust, double the recipe)
This salty, cardamom-scented pie crust goes well with sweet pies like citrus, apples, bananas, chocolate, coffee, sweet potatoes, and savory pies like meat, root vegetables and curry. A Baking With Chickens Original Recipe. See my tips for how to bake a perfect pie crust.
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus extra for rolling
1/2 cup (1 stick or 4 ounces) unsalted butter, very-cold, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon sugar
3 to 4 tablespoons ice water
1. Mix flour, sugar, salt, and cardamom -- in a large bowl or in a food processor.
2. Add butter, cut in the butter into the flour mixture using a pastry cutter or your fingers. If using a food processor, add half at a time, pulsing several times after each addition. Pulse to cut in the butter and mix until the texture is like soft wet sand with butter chunks no larger
than pea-sized. Flatten butter chunks with your fingers.
3. Slowly drizzle ice water a little at a time. Mix or pulse. Then add more ice water a tablespoon at a time until the dough just starts to hold together.
4. Press pie dough to see if it holds together. You know that the mixture is ready if when you pinch some of the crumbly dough together with your fingers, it holds together. Don’t add too much water or your dough will be tough.
5. Gather the mixture and divide the dough into two halves. Knead just enough for the dough to hold together, but don’t over-knead. Press the dough together and form two flat dough disks. This will help when you need to roll it out.
6. You’ll see cold butter chunks/streaks speckling the dough. These small bits of butter will spread out into layers as the crust bakes to create a flaky crust.
7. Wrap each one in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for one hour or up to 2 days.
8. Remove one crust disk from the refrigerator and place on a rolling surface between two large sheets of parchment paper. Very lightly flour the dough disk to help it stick less to the parchment.
9. Roll out with a rolling pin on a lightly floured surface to about 1/8-inch thick. As you roll out the dough, if the parchment is getting wrinkled on the dough, peel the parchment off the dough, sprinkle lightly with flour, and continue rolling.
10. Peel the parchment slowly and carefully off the dough on one side. If it’s very sticky, put it in the fridge for a little bit to chill and harden. Place the parchment back on top and flip the dough with both parchment papers over. Peel the parchment off the other side. Save parchment to use for blind baking.
11. Place a 9-inch pie plate upside-down on top of the dough. Grab the side of the pie plate along with the parchment paper with both hands and flip them right-side up.
12. Take the sides of the dough and lift them gently to fall into the pie pan so that it lines the bottom and sides of the pie plate. Don’t stretch or press the dough down.
13. Use a pair of kitchen scissors to trim the dough to within 1/2 inch of the edge of the pie dish.
14. Crimp the edges. Use a fork to poke holes on the bottom of the crust to allow steam to escape when baking.
To Blind Bake a Pre-Baked Pie Crust:
1. Place pie shell into the freezer and chill for at least 30 minutes to an hour.
2. Pre-heat your oven to 350°F. Make sure you are starting with a frozen pie crust, not defrosted.
3. Line the inside of the frozen pie crust with two layers of parchment paper (that you saved from rolling the pie dough) or heavy duty aluminum foil, pressing against the sides and bottom of the crust, allowing the paper/foil to extend by a couple of inches on two opposing sides.
4. Fill the pie crust to the top with pie weights. You can use ceramic weights, dry beans, rice, or white sugar. Press the weights down lightly to fill in all sides of the pie and fold down any parchment seams. (You can reuse the sugar after baking. Baking the sugar lightly caramelizes it, making it even more flavorful if you want to use it later.)
5. Bake at 350°F for 60 to 75 minutes. Check the pie crust at 60 minutes to see if the edges and bottom are turning golden brown by lifting the excess foil. If bottom looks pale and unbaked but crust and side look golden brown, lift the pie weights out using parchment paper/foil and continue baking until the bottom of the pie is golden brown. If edges are browning too much but the bottom is not done, cover edges with foil to prevent over-browning.
6. Remove the pie shell from the oven. Lift out the pie weights from the pie shell using paper/foil, set aside to cool and store for future use.
20. Cool pie shell completely before adding pie filling.
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