For Mothers Day, I was tasked with making a Shaker Lemon Pie and while I do tinker in the kitchen from time to time, I had never made a pie before, let alone a pie crust from scratch. So, with recipe in hand, I got started.
Most "good old" flaky pie crusts recipes, are about the same. You need flour, shortening, butter, sugar, salt, and a bit of water. All of that sounded good except, I didn't want to use shortening. As a family, we've been trying to cut out a lot of processed foods and over processed oils/fats from our diet, so I wanted to use something that was going to be a little more healthy. My wife suggested I try coconut oil because of it's many health benefits. I took her advice and the pie turned out awesome! Best of all, the crust was light, flaky, and it had the perfect crumble.
Since then, I've used this recipe to make multiple pies, tarts, and turnovers (hand pies) and they have all turned out delicious. I did tweaked the crust recipe just a bit, to also include Flax Seed Meal in the dry ingredients. It's super healthy and it doesn't change the taste or texture of the crust. Plus, it adds 1.8 grams of plant omega-3s, plus lignans and fiber.
I honestly couldn't ask for more from a pie crust. It's easy, tasty, and everyone loves it (plus it's a little healthy).
I hope you enjoy this recipe and the creations you make with it!
Step 1: The Ingredients
2 1/2 Cups All Purpose Flour
8 Table Spoons of Coconut Oil (Chilled in the refrigerator until solid)
12 Table Spoons of Unsalted Butter (1 1/2 Sticks) Chilled
2 Table Spoons of Sugar
1 Tea Spoon of Salt (I use Pink Himalayan Sea Salt)
1 Table Spoon of Flax Seed Meal (optional/not pictured)
6-7 Table Spoons of Ice Cold Water (not pictured)
***Because coconut oil is in a semi liquid state at room temperature, I find it easier to scoop out the 8 table spoons from the container and put it into a bowl prior to chilling (about 1 hour). Afterwards, it works in just like shortening.
Step 2: Combining the Ingredients
Combine the flour, salt, sugar, and flax seed meal in your food processor and process for about 5 seconds. Scatter the solid coconut oil over the top and process again for an additional 10 seconds. Finally scatter the chilled butter over top and pulse about 10 times until it resembles a coarse crumbs.
***If you do not have a food processor, the ingredients can also be combined by hand using a spoon or fork to reach the desired texture.
Step 3: Adding the Water
Now, transfer the dry ingredients to a large bowl. Spread 6 table spoons of water over the dry mixture and start to work it together using a spoon until the dough pulls together into a ball (you may need to also use your hands).
***Flax Seed Meal makes the dry mixture a little drier so you may need an additional table spoon of water.
Step 4: Forming and Wrapping the Dough Disk
Split the dough in half and form two 4 inch discs. Wrap the disks tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Step 5: Rolling the Dough
Once the dough has had time to firm up. Remove it from the refrigerator and allow it to soften for 5-10 minutes. Then on a lightly floured surface, roll the dough evenly into two 12-14 inch circles. Be careful to maintain even thickness.
***From this point you can do almost anything with the dough. You can roll/press them both into 9" pie plates for two pies, roll/press one into a 9" pie plate and save the other for a top crust, or cut it into rounds to use in a muffin tin for small pies, tarts, or use them to make hand pies. It's a truly versatile dough.
Step 6: For a Double Pie Crust
Roll the first crust slowly onto your rolling pin and then gently unroll it over your 9" pie plate. Lift the dough and carefully press it into the pie plate. Roll the second crust onto your rolling pin and then transfer it to a foil/parchment paper lined baking sheet. Cover both with plastic wrap and place back into the refrigerator for an additional 30 minutes, while you prepare your pie filling.
From this point, you'll need to follow the baking instructions for your pie, depending on the filling you are using.
***While the recipe it self makes 1 double pie crust, I have found that most of the time I have enough trimmings to pull together an additional single pie crust. Simply roll the scraps into a ball, shape a 4" disk, wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate. I've used the scraps to make a few tarts and even a chocolate pie.
Step 7: Sweet Treats
Here are a few of the creations I've made with this crust recipe. As I've said, it's really a very versatile crust and it has yet to disappoint.
Happy Pie Making!