JOANNA'S FOOD: family cooking, from scratch, every day

Friday, March 14, 2008

Pi day - shaken hot water pastry

It's Pi day today ... March 14th = 3.14 = well, my computer won't make the Greek alphabet, so you'll just have to imagine the last part of that equation. All the same, food bloggers with a tendency to be geeky are celebrating by making pies. It was Alanna's idea.

We don't go in for many pies here, too much butter = high cholesterol. I'm not making a pie today because we only have those on very special occasions, two or perhaps three times a year. But, as it's Pi day, I'm giving the recipe for the wonderful, magical, delicious and low-fat traditional French recipe for shaken hot water pastry. Quick and easy, particularly for those of us who struggle to make light-as-a-feather pastry.

Shaken hot-water pastry

225g flour
1 tbsp caster sugar (leave it out if you're making something savoury)
1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch salt
4 tbsp mild salad oil
1/2 beaten egg
3 tbsp hot water

Put all the ingredients into a lidded plastic box and shake it for at least a minute. When you take off the lid, you will find a lumpy mixture; form it into a ball with your hands, and roll it out on a floured surface. The original recipe says this is enough for a 24cm tin, but I have made this a number of times, and find that it is rather too much for a 24cm tin, better in the next size up, because this pastry is better when it is very thin. You can use this straight away, no need to rest it.

Related links

Butterless pastry - and a fruit tart
Shaken hot water pastry


Alanna Kellogg said...

Thank you, thank you, Joanna! This is a perfect recipe for Pi Day, proving that pie crust can be made in so many ways. For those who watch their cholesterol, this is completely perfect.

Tempered Woman said...

This is really interesting~ thanks so much for sharing another crust recipe!

Lisa said...

What a great idea. I love your recipe! I want to try it right now...but I think I ran out of flour.

Happy Pi Day!

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Now that is really an interesting crust! Hope I can keep this one on my radar to try!

Cottage Smallholder said...

This sounds like a fun way of making pastry. Thanks Joanna,

KJ said...

Wow, this is a really interesting way to make pastry. I am definitely going to give it a try.

Mandy said...

Got to try this one! Thanks!

Allergy Mom said...

Thanks so much for introducing me to this type of crust! It looks ideal for a savory pie. Btw, is castor sugar the same as powdered? Libby

Joanna said...

Thanks everyone for kind words.

Libby, caster sugar is like granulated, only slightly less grainy, and used for making cakes as it's a little lighter. I think what you call powdered sugar must be what we call icing sugar, the texture of flour. Thinking about it, either would do to add to this pastry mix.


ejm said...

I love the method for making this pastry!

Libby, according to Cook's Thesaurus - sugar, caster sugar is the same as berry sugar or fruit sugar. It's really finely granulated sugar. I use fruit sugar for a cake I make at Christmas. However, I have used regular sugar to make the cake as well and it has turned out just as well. I'm not sure that I would use icing sugar (powdered sugar) though because that has cornstarch in it.


P.S. I you type Π (ampersand#928semicolon), the symbol Π should show up.

Annemarie said...

Well, it's a bit like a pizza pie but without the cheese. :) I really meant to celebrate pi day but more poor little head can't keep all these things in mind. Looks great!

Tomsmum said...

Has anyone tried this without the egg? We are allergic so...

Joanna said...

Not sure about going egg-less here, but why don't you try with a bit of water ... or just egg white if it's the yolk you're allergic to (or vice versa)? Often the egg is for taste as much as for its binding qualities ...