Aug 22, 2012

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Pâte Sucrée à la Martha – The Best Shortcrust Pastry

Martha Stewart, the doyenne of cooking, styling, homemaking and everything in between is the person I turn to for anything pastry related. Martha’s done a lot of amazing things in her career but for me the highlight was the original 1995 publication of Martha Stewart’s Pies and Tarts.  I believe she’s recently published a new version but I can’t imagine how the original could be improved upon.  This is my go to recipe for sweet shortcrust pastry.  It’s incredibly short, easy to make and easy to handle.  I made this recently as the base for an apple tarte tatin from the same book (I’ll be posting this next) and it was amazing.  If you need a reliable, foolproof short crust pastry, Martha’s recipe can’t be beat.

Ingredients – Makes 1 large tart shell   From Martha Stewart

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for work surface
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
Pinch of salt
125g chilled unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 large egg yolk
2 Tablespoons cold water


Place flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, and pulse to combine. Add butter, and process until mixture resembles coarse meal, about 10 seconds.

In a small bowl, lightly beat yolks with the water. With machine running, add yolk mixture and process just until dough holds together, no more than 20 seconds.

Form the dough into a flat disk and wrap in plastic. Chill in refrigerator until ready to use, at least 2 hours. Can also be frozen for up to a month and defrosted before use.

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