Wednesday, December 17, 2008

46. Savory Pie Dough Topping

Date Cooked: December 16, 2008
Page: 352

Rating: B

This was made as a component to a Chicken Pot Pie I made. It was also my very first attempt at making pie dough of any kind. I’ve been intimidated by pastry for quite awhile since I always here horror stories about unworkable dough and using just the right amount of water and making sure butter is chilled, etc. But since I was behind on cooking from the book and I happened to have all the ingredients for this I figured I would dive in and see what the worst could be. If you’ve been following this blog you can imagine that the worst can be bad… this time it wasn’t too bad.

The flour and salt got a quick workout in the food processor to mix. I am beginning to hate my food processor for mixing dry ingredients. I have mentioned it before but everytime I pulsed a cloud of ingredients puffed out of it and it and covered everything. And cleaning up flour with a damp cloth really sucks and is somewhat gross. The cloth gets all covered in some sort of pseudo-dough. Nasty.

Anyway I cut in some lard (the recipe asked for vegetable shortening but I didn’t have any on hand) and then some chilled butter. I don’t think it was chilled enough because it sort of melted and would get clumpy. Anyway I dumped the mixture into a bowl and mixed in some ice water. This was where inexperience hurt me. I didn’t really know what the dough should look or feel like. I figured if I could form it into a ball and it just held together, then that was enough. I don’t know if that is right.
I wrapped the ball, flattened it a bit and left it in the fridge while I prepared the main dish.

When it was time for the dough I took it out and got ready to roll. This is the rolling “pin” I have to work with.

It’s a pampered chef contraption and my wife says lots of people love this thing. I’ve used it for smaller quantities of things needing to be rolled and it works pretty good, but it definitely doesn’t work well for firmer dough or large quantities. The dough was tough to roll and would constantly split around the edges. I managed to work it out into a shape large enough to cover the pot pie (13x9). I had to keep folding the edges over in order to get them to hold shape but in the end it worked out pretty well. I will definitely be investing in a heavier rolling pin. Any suggestions? The dough was definitely strong enough to move from the work surface to place on top of the filling.

Rating: B. It gets a B rating for a few reasons. The most critical one being taste. It tasted like flour. It wasn’t really bad but definitely detracted from the taste. The dough wasn’t super flaky either but it had a great texture nonetheless. Overall I was proud of it. I’m sure I will get better as I make pie dough more often and find the right technique for me.


  1. I've always made the same pie dough for sweet and savory. It definitely looks like you pulled this one off, though!

  2. You need a better rolling pin, but it looks like this came together for you. Love pot pie!

    I have the easiest pie crust recipe ever - no cold water, no worries about overworking the dough and it is flaky and tasty. If you email me, I'll send you the recipe:


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