When I decided to attempt to make pastry for the first time I didn't realise that it would be such a challenging and interesting experience. Potentially quite a fattening process too.
Trying something new when you have nothing to check against, or someone to show you, can make things a little more difficult. The only thing I have to go on is that I know whether I like the taste and texture, or not as the case may be. You'll have to excuse the rough edges on the pastry in the picture, this was one the first times that I'd made pastry.
I began by finding a base recipe. The one I found initially was included in a recipe for Tarte aux Pommes. The mix of flour to butter was 6 ounces to 4½ ounces. Included was an egg yolk and water. Now this produced a nice tasting pastry, however it seemed to be too difficult to work with to be able to get the pastry thin enough.
The second recipe I found was from the BBC website, on their shortcrust pastry page. Their recipe for basic pastry is 4 oz butter to 8 ounces of flour. So more flour compared to butter. The egg was omitted too. This produced a dough that was easy to work with, however I found the colour unappetising, the taste was dry and powdery. Now, I'm assuming that the egg was giving the pastry a warm colour in the first recipe and the extra flour has made it easier to work with but makes it dry.
I think for the next pastry, after we've lost our additional weight, I'll be including the egg back into the recipe. There must be a happy medium between the weights of flour used in the two recipes, I'll be going between the two and seeing if this helps the situation. After all, it's pointless to have pastry that doesn't taste nice, but you can work with and vice-versa.
If you have a recipe that is tried and tested for pastry, or would like to let me know where the happy medium is, drop me a line on the Contact Stu's Food page.
I'll let you know how I get on with my next couple of pastry doughs.
- Written by Stuart Edge
- Category: General News
- Published: 29 April 2012