Shortcrust pastry, oh how it delights the senses with its buttery aroma and delicate crumb. A true classic in the realm of baking, this versatile creation never fails to impress. The secret lies in the balance of simplicity and finesse, a marriage of humble ingredients transformed into a delectable canvas for roth sweet and savoury creations.
Whether encasing a luscious fruit filling or enveloping a savoury medley, shortcrust pastry invites creativity and indulgence. It’s golden, crisp exterior hides a tender embrace that holds the essence of any delectable filling within. So let us embrace the art of pastry making, cherishing the magic that lies within this humble yet extraordinary creation – shortcrust pastry.
- 500g all-purpose flour
- 2 egg yolks
- 2 tbsp milk
- 300g unsalted butter
- 150g icing sugar
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- Begin by combining the all-purpose flour and icing sugar in a bowl, ensuring they are well mixed together.
- Cut the unsalted butter into small pieces and add them to the flour and icing sugar mixture. Use your fingertips to gently rub the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
- In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, milk, and vanilla extract. Pour this mixture into the dry ingredients and bring everything together to form a dough. Be careful not to overmix; a light touch is key.
- Transfer the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead it gently for a few minutes until it becomes smooth and cohesive. Wrap the dough in cling film and refrigerate it for 30 minutes. This chilling time will help the dough relax and become easier to work with.
- Preheat your oven to 180°C (350°F) and prepare a tart pan by greasing it lightly.
- Take the chilled dough out of the refrigerator and place it on a floured surface. Roll it out evenly, making sure it’s wide enough to fit your tart pan and about 5-6mm thick. Carefully transfer the rolled-out dough to the prepared pan, pressing it gently into the corners and edges.
- Use a fork to prick the base of the pastry all over. This will prevent it from puffing up during baking and ensure an even bake.
- To prevent the pastry from rising, cover it with baking paper and fill the pan with baking beans or any dried beans or rice you have on hand. Blind bake the pastry in the preheated oven for 10 minutes.
- After 10 minutes, remove the baking paper and beans, then return the pastry to the oven for an additional 5 minutes or until it turns a lovely golden brown color.
- Once baked, take the tart pan out of the oven and allow the pastry to cool for a few minutes in the pan. Then carefully remove the pastry from the pan and let it cool completely on a wire rack before using it as desired.
There you have it – a beautiful homemade shortcrust pastry ready to be filled with your favourite sweet or savoury creations. Enjoy the delightful buttery flavour and tender texture that this pastry brings to your dishes!