Was This Your Grandmother’s Secret, Too?
I truly wonder if my grandma was using this same trick to make her famous pie pastry!
She made all kinds of pies, and even though people loved the different fillings and flavors, they never stopped asking about the amazingly delicious, flaky crust.
Grandma learned to cook at a very young age and she made the most amazing things out of simple ingredients.
When someone would ask for a recipe for one of her incredible dishes, she would just shrug and laugh and say “Oh, I just threw in whatever I had at hand!”
She did not have recipes written down; she either knew them by heart or simply made something she had never tried before, based on what she knew about similar dishes.
So we never got the recipe for her pie pastry, and that saddens me.
Fortunately, a couple of years ago one of my neighbors gave me this one, and I’ve been making it ever since.
It’s the closest thing to grandma’s pie crust that I’ve come across. And you won’t believe what the secret ingredient is!
Your eyes are not deceiving you – there really is vodka in there! It sounded crazy to me but my neighbor assured me this would make the tastiest pie crust ever.
And she was right! Don’t worry, it’s not going to taste like booze, at all.
The vodka actually vaporizes and leaves you with this amazingly flaky crust. Sometimes I feel like making and eating the crust on its own, without any fillings! It’s THAT good!
Have you tried this recipe already? We would love to hear about it in the comments below!
2 1/2 cups unbleached Gold Medal all purpose flour
8 tablespoons leaf lard (cut into small pieces)
8 tablespoons Land O Lakes butter (cut into small pieces)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 tablespoons Domino sugar (optional)
1/4 cup vodka, cold
1/4 cup cold water
Combine all ingredients except the water and vodka in a medium bowl.
Blend with a pastry cutter. Be careful to not overwork the dough.
Sprinkle the water and vodka over the mixture and then, with a rubber spatula, use a folding motion to mix the dough together. You are looking for a consistency where the dough just holds together in a ball and is no longer powdery. Add additional water and/or vodka if needed to reach the desired consistency.
Divide the dough into two balls and flatten each into a disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.
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Quick tip: If you don’t happen to have vodka, brandy works just as well!