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Terrible at Pastry

(11 Posts)
LaBelleSausage Mon 13-Nov-17 17:27:08

As the title suggests, I’m terrible at making pastry.

I have a sage scraper pro stand mixer which I adore, although have never tried to make pastry in there as I suspect it would end up overworked.

I don’t currently own a food processor, just a stick blender.

The Black Friday sales are coming up, and I’m so tempted to splash out on a food processor. It would make my like much easier when making things like chickpea mash, etc, but will it also enable me to make pastry like a domestic goddess?

I’ve been eyeing the Magimix 5200xl just because it’s on bake-off.
The sage kitchen whizz is also tempting given how much I love my stand mixer.
Does anyone have any opinions/suggested alternatives?

And will it actually be useful for making mince pies this year that don’t have a rubber like texture?

Mominatrix Mon 13-Nov-17 17:39:27

I find that pastry is best by hand, otherwise the dough will be tough due to overworking it. There is one exception and that is Thomas Keller's quiche crust recipe which is done in a stand mixer.

Best by hand is this one I have used often. There is a video which is handy. The resultant pastry is very flaky.

Slighty less flaky and a tad bit firmer and more crumbly is the Thomas Keller. Here is the recipe. The key is to hold back one cup of flour and to mix that in by hand after the flour/butter/water is mixed.

Anotherdayanotherdollar Mon 13-Nov-17 17:42:28

Alternative is to buy the ready rolled stuff from aldi/Lidl. It's about 80c, not sure about sterling price. I can no longer justify the cost of butter and time it takes to make proper pastry at that price!

Heratnumber7 Mon 13-Nov-17 17:59:35

Much easier to make by hand.

The secret according to my cookery teacher 40 years ago is cold hands.

Some people naturally have cold hands. Others don’t. Her advice for warm handed folk was to run your hands under cold water before you start rubbing in the fat and flour. It works for me.

I use lard at a ratio of half fat to flour, then take a handful of the flour to use for rolling out (ie, not extra flour). My pastry is always lovely and short.

AssassinatedBeauty Mon 13-Nov-17 18:04:08

I use a food processor if I'm in a rush. You just use it the absolute minimum you need to get to the breadcrumb stage, then I just pulse it a couple of times whilst adding water. At that point I tip it out and do the rest by hand. It never comes out overworked for me.

handslikecowstits Mon 13-Nov-17 18:08:37

Sounds like you're overworking the dough. Pastry needs to be handled as little possible so once you've added the water and have cleaned the bowl into a ball IYKWIM then wrap it in cling film and refrigerate for about 30 mins. You don't need to knead it or shape it pummel it in any way.

I do use a processor because I'm lazy but I'm really careful to do the bare minimum to it otherwise it does indeed become rubbery.

LaBelleSausage Mon 13-Nov-17 18:18:52

Oh I’ve tried it all. Freezing the bowl I use, making my hands as cold as possible, using a knife instead of my hands.

I am resigned to being a terrible pastry maker.

If a food processor won’t help then so be it!

OlennasWimple Mon 13-Nov-17 18:21:09

I found that using iced water was the trick I was missing to making decent pastry

MarriedinMaui Mon 13-Nov-17 18:22:12

Read this:

Two completely different ways of making pastry which both work. This website is fantastic because they really explain the science behind what they are telling you to do.

gybegirl Mon 13-Nov-17 18:24:43

I got my magimix 17 years ago. It still works just as well as ever and pastry is the most easy thing in it. I also use it for soups, sauces many times a week. If it (ever) broke I'd get another in a heartbeat.

AssassinatedBeauty Mon 13-Nov-17 18:28:40

I agree with iced water as well, and only work the dough as little as you need to get it to come together. When rolling and re-rolling whilst cutting out, again try and do the bare minimum to get it back together.

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