Help me beautify my pie crust edges
I have been doing well in terms of taste with my pie crusts, but in the aesthetic department, let's just say I have the more rustic look mastered.
If I want that sophisticated look particularly for a single crust pie, what do I do? I can't seem to roll pie crust out in a circle (I can roll other doughs in a circle) and the edges come out dry, craggly, and uneven, making it a tough place to start. What can I do when rolling it out to make the whole thing stay in a circle and keep the edges well-behaved?
I'd appreciate suggestions.
Don't roll it. I don't roll out a one crust pie, I pat it in the pan. Assuming you have enough crust and it is pliable enough (got enough water?), extend it to the very edge of the pie dish and flute with two thumbs. Piece of cake, or pie, to master.
I don't know if you'd consider my crusts "sophisticated" but I think they aren't bad looking. (see picture attached...unbaked crust) But I don't try to get the entire crust into a circle. My crust recipe is generously sized, so I just roll it out until I have the middle area bigger than my pie tin, plop the whole thing in there and after I have it smoothed down into the tin I just trim the ragged edges off. So none of the dry cracked edges end up on my pie at all. Does that make sense?
We each have our own methods. I find that pie crust is easier to roll out if it is put between two pieces of wax paper. I slightly dampen the bottom of the bottom sheet to keep it from slipping on the board. When fitting the bottom crust in the pie plate, I let it hang over the top of the pan a bit. If neccessary, trim to about 1/2 " and fold that under itself. Then I flute by pushing/pinching the dough between two fingers on one hand with one finger of the other.
I bought a small-tiny sized cookie cutter (leaf shaped) and cut out a few dozen leaves then attach with water all around the edges of my pie- even if it is a 2 crust pie- place them ontop of the crimped portion of crust. You just have to make sure once they start to cook cover them with foil so they don't burn. Your pies will look very professional. If your a real perfectionist like I tend to be- buy a little larger version of the same cookie cutter and place the larger leave(s) on the top of pie. Your pie looks like you have appliqued on top of it.
When you wrap your dough to refrigerate it, make sure it is in the nearest to perfectly round disk you can manage. Don't try to roll out the dough straight from the fridge. That's a recipe for hopelessly cracked edges. If you're too impatient to let the dough warm up some (like me) try giving it a few really good whacks with your rolling pin to make the dough pliant.
Flour your surface evenly, roll from the center outwards and - most importantly - give the dough a quarter turn after each roll. A little tiresome but it helps you catch any spots that are going out of round. You can stop turning when the dough gets too awkward to move easily.
You're on your own for fluting, though. After years of trying I still always manage to put my thumb through the dough when pinching.