Shortcrust pastry is one of those baked goods that are not too complicated and time-consuming to prepare. We can eat them not only sweet, but also salty. Still looking for a proven recipe to make your shortcrust pastry always perfect? Get inspired by our tips!
In a traditional shortcrust pastry recipe, the most important thing is to maintain a constant ratio of flour to fat and sugar, which should be 3:2:1. This means that for every three parts of flour there are two parts of fat and one part of sugar. Equally important is the proper selection of ingredients.
To bake shortcrust pastry, low gluten wheat flour is most often used, but you can also use crisp flour. Another ingredient you will need is fat. The best choice is butter with a minimum fat content of 82%. If we want our shortcrust pastry to be more crumbly, we can replace a small part of the butter with lard. Avoid margarines and butter-like products.
For shortcrust pastry we also need sugar. Powdered sugar will be perfect, as the dough will squish well with it. However, if we do not have it on hand, we can use fine ordinary sugar or grind it to dust.
The above three ingredients are the base of the shortcrust pastry recipe. Keeping them in the right proportions, we don’t have to, but we can add an egg yolk (the white will make the dough come out harder) or a small amount of cold water, milk or sour cream, which will help the dough to set faster and not crumble.
All ingredients for shortcrust dough should be cold, so it will knead better and faster. Remember that shortcrust dough does not like long kneading. So, in order to speed up the process, we can help ourselves with a food processor or a malaker. A good solution will also be to chop the ingredients with a knife and only knead them into a homogeneous mass. The most important thing is to keep the kneading process as short as possible, so that the fat does not have time to heat up too much, which could affect the deformation of the dough during baking and, as a result, hardening of the baked product.
First, combine the butter with the sugar (and possibly the egg yolk). After kneading a smooth mass, we add sifted flour and knead. Wrap the finished dough carefully with cling film and put it in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, preferably for 1 hour to chill. After this time we take out the mass, roll it out and line the form. If the dough sticks to the countertop while rolling it out, we can toss it with a small amount of flour to keep it from sticking. It’s also a good idea to roll out the short dough between two sheets of baking paper – this should prevent the mass from sticking to the countertop and the rolling pin.
After lining the mold with the dough, we again put it in the refrigerator for about an hour. If you want to speed up the process, you can hide the mold in the freezer.
Before baking, prick the dough with a fork, which will prevent it from bulging. Preheat the oven to the required temperature. Bake the shortcrust pastry at a minimum of 180 and a maximum of 200 degrees Celsius, it depends on the thickness of the bottom. The optimal baking time is about 25 minutes. If you have an oven with a thermo-circulating oven, the cake only needs to be baked for about 15-20 minutes.
main photo: pixabay.com/Samueles