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- 3 cups all purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups vegetable shortening (don't substitute for something else... this is what makes it flaky)
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp salt
- 5 tablespoons ice water
- 1 tablespoon vinegar, vanilla extract, or butter extract (vinegar for savory or apple pie, or any of them to taste)
Measure your flour and vegetable shortening into a large bowl. Use a pastry cutter, or two knives if you don't have a pastry cutter (but I would recommend just getting one, they aren't that expensive), and cut the shortening into the flour. Keep this up until you have little balls of dough. Don't over work it past this point. In a small bowl, whisk your egg and pour it into your bowl and fold in. Add your salt, ice water, and flavoring and continue to fold in. Once everything looks incorporated, split the crust into 2 balls if you are using a large pie pan, or 3 parts if you are using a standard size pie pan (8-9inch). Put the balls in a gallon freezer bag and flatten the ball and stick it in the freezer. Leave it in there for about 15-20 minutes, or until it is firm. Put a piece of wax paper on the counter (trust me, this will make later easier!) and sprinkle it with flour. Pull one of the flour balls onto the wax paper and pat down. At this point, it is usually easier to go ahead and pull up the dough and flip it onto freshly sprinkled flour. This step will make it easier to remove from the wax paper later. Sprinkle with flour and roll out toward yourself (not back and forth). When you have your dough to desired thickness, loosen from the wax paper with a thin spatula. This is where the wax paper comes in handy. You can flip the whole crust into a pan, then once you have situated the crust, peel off the paper.