Pie Crust (pâté brisée) | Morsels of Life

Pie Crust (pâté brisée)

Morsels of Life - Pie Crust (pâté brisée)

I wanted to make some chicken pot pie, so I thought I'd start off by tackling the elusive flaky crust. The kind of butter pie dough I made is technically called "pâté brisée," which means "broken dough" in French - broken because of the way you cut the butter in, and the way it flakes. So now you have a new term to impress people with. I think that a pie crust is one of those things where feeling the dough is more important than having an exact recipe. The amount of water needed will vary depending on a multitude of factors, ranging from your flour type and age to the temperature of your kitchen. Although I had made pie crusts before, I thought it was time to work on improving my crust making skillz. I found that working with a food processor made things a lot easier, especially compared to my previous method of using a fork! Using the food processor also helped keep things cold, since the mixing occurred much faster, and things did not have as much time to warm up. And that really is key - keep everything as cold as possible!

A flaky, buttery pie crust suitable for just about any pie.

Yield: 2 single crusts or 1 double crust


Mass Weight Volume Number Material Notes
2.5 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup butter, cut into 1/2 teaspoon pieces and frozen
ice water


  1. Measure out flour and mix butter into it or pulse together with a food processor.
  2. Slowly add ice water until dough will barely hold together.
  3. Remove the dough and gently shape it into something flat. Work the dough just enough to flatten it into two discs. Do not over work the dough because it will cause the crust to become tough. At this point, you might still be able to see small bits of butter. These small butter bits are what will cause the crust to be flaky.
  4. Refrigerate covered overnight, or for at least a few hours. This time will allow the moisture to become more uniform in the dough since only a small amount is used.
  5. If you're not using the crust soon, you can also freeze it for later usage.

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