It is the simplest and most basic of pastry doughs, it has only four ingredients with very simple proportions to remember and it is almost impossible to make. Our mothers used to make it without even looking at the cookbook.
This is the shortcrust pastry.
The proportions to know by heart, so easy
Twice as much flour as butter, a pinch of salt, one egg per 100 grams of butter and a little cold water.
Controlling the temperature of the butter
This is the only point you need to pay attention to: the butter must be at the right temperature to be well mixed with the flour. If you haven't had time to take it out, put it in the microwave on the lowest setting for a few moments (about a minute), and don't melt it completely.
Then the dough must be cooled before being worked on, otherwise it will be too sticky.
In summer, or in Morocco where it is already very hot when I write this article, it may even be necessary to put it back in the fridge while working, if it starts to stick.
Baking "blind" or filled
Depending on the filling, the pastry will be baked with nothing but marbles, beans or cherry pits to prevent it from rising, or completely filled.
In both cases, the pastry must be pierced with a fork all over its surface to prevent it from rising.
In both cases, it can be cooked at 200 – 210° C with rotating heat, for 25 to 30 minutes. If you are pre-cooking it to add a filling, calculate carefully so that the total cooking time remains under 35 minutes.
- 125 gr Butter softened
- 250 gr Wheat flour T45 or T50, "farine pâtissière" in Morocco
- 1 Egg
- 5 cl Water very cold
- 5 gr Salt
- At least an hour beforehand, take out the butter, cut it into small pieces and let it warm up so that it becomes soft (but not melting).
- Place the butter in a bowl, add the flour, salt and egg (or just the egg yolk).
- Mix the butter with the flour until all the flour is fixed with the butter. The dough is very crumbly. You can mix by hand, which allows you to go fast without overworking the dough, with a mixer or a food processor (with the sheet).
- Add the ice water little by little, mixing quickly just to form a homogeneous ball (mixer or food processor is more pleasant). If kneading by hand, mill the dough two or three times.
- Film and refrigerate for at least half an hour.
- Once the dough has hardened, flour the work surface or a board and roll it out as quickly as possible.