We’ve had a Cuisinart food processor for years, and I’ve been using the standard blade for making pie dough for quite awhile with fairly decent results (I usually make an all-butter, 50% whole wheat dough, so it just can’t compete for texture with lard/shortening all-white-flour crusts). For some reason, we never really paid much attention to the “Dough” button on the device, and had all but forgotten about the dull “dough blade” that came with the food processor.
I wanted to bake a couple of pies last week for a party, so I decided to give it a try. Never again. The dough didn’t mix properly, and I ended up with large patches of too-moist mixed with large patches of completely dry dough. It was bad enough that I reverted to the standard blade for my second batch, despite some small hope that things might improve after setting up in the fridge for a few hours. As you can see from the bowl on the left in the photo, it didn’t help — the dough fell apart into too-wet and too-dry chunks as soon as I tried to break off a chunk to roll out. Because I needed both batches of dough for two covered pies, I ended up “rescuing” the bad batch by adding a little water and re-processing it in the food processor, mixing it into the good batch. Needless to say the additional processing resulted in crusts were not the best I’ve made (still pretty tasty, though), and I will be hiding the dough blade somewhere so I can’t find it and make the same mistake again.
For those who are interested in the recipe, it’s a modification of a double-batch version of the basic pie crust recipe from Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone:
- 1.5 cups whole wheat flour
- 1.5 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 pound cold butter
- 1/3 to 2/3 cups ice water, as needed
Add the flours and salt into the food processor, along with the butter, cut into rough chunks. Pulse until the butter is integrated (but not completely pulverized) and then slowly drizzle the ice water in through the top of the food processor as it is running. The dough should be fairly dry, but stick together if you try to shape it. Wrap it in plastic wrap and put it into the fridge for at least an hour to hydrate or it will crumble to pieces when you try to roll it out.