Joined: 24 Sep 2004 Posts: 443 Location: Paris, France
Posted: Fri Jul 03, 2009 8:00 pm Post subject:
Welcome to the forums, Leejay, and thanks for chiming in!
Funny you should mention the vodka: on the night I served the Saskatoon tart that had a bit of vinegar in the crust, my friend Laura mentioned that vodka trick: instead of adding iced water to make the pie dough come together, she uses vodka. As she explained it (I didn't double-check the science so forgive the haziness), vodka evaporates faster than water (the alcohol cooks off in the oven) so you're left with a crust that has a much lower water content than if you'd used plain water (and water toughens crusts -- due to some interaction with the gluten I imagine).
Joined: 11 Nov 2007 Posts: 236 Location: Madison, WI
Posted: Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:15 pm Post subject:
I am very interested in this discussion as I make tough and disgusting pie crust. I am interested in trying any trick I can to make a crust that is actually edible. My last attempt involved inventing a bread crumb crust for quiche based on the principle of graham cracker crusts for pie. That crust was disgusting and inedible as well. My grandmother had the theory that cooks were either "pie people" or "cake people." THis would imply that the fact that I make good cakes dooms me in the pie department. However, the fact that many people on this forum make both, gives me the courage to try again.
I may try both vinegar and vodka as crust ingredients since tough (impenetrable) crusts are my problem. Luckily we have strong silverware in my house so nobody (yet!) has bent a fork trying to eat one of my pies. In terms of the vodka, I did see an interesting TV program about the science of food that claims only a relatively minimal amount of alcohol cooks off in baking. However, I am not trying to make non-alcoholic pie, and I imagine the amount of vodka per person in a pie crust would be minimal, so I am willing to try.
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