How to Make Basic Pastry

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Makes:

    2 x 20 cm

    galettes or quiches

Appears in

This is a very versatile pastry as it can be used for both sweet and savoury recipes. Chilling the dough is important to give the gluten time to relax, making it easier to roll out.

PREPARATION: 10 minutes, plus 30 minutes chilling
COOKING: varies according to the topping or filling


  • 200 g (7 oz/1⅓ cups) plain (all-purpose) flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 1 tablespoon caster (superfine) sugar (only if making sweet pastry)
  • 75 g non-dairy butter, chilled
  • 45–70 ml (1½–2¼ fl oz) iced water


Whisk together the flour, salt and sugar (if making sweet pastry). Cut the butter into small dice and rub into the flour to make a breadcrumb consistency.

Using a blunt knife, gradually mix in the water to make a dough. Tip out onto a lightly floured work surface, bring the mixture together and lightly knead. Divide into 2 pieces, shape into discs and wrap individually in baking paper. Chill for 30 minutes.

Roll out the dough between 2 sheets of lightly floured baking paper – 3 mm ( inch) thick is perfect – and carefully peel back the top layer of paper. Work with one piece of dough at a time, leaving the rest in the fridge until ready to roll.

If lining a pastry tin, loosely roll the pastry around the rolling pin and drape over the tin. Gently press the pastry into the tin and fill according to recipe instructions. If making a galette, leave the pastry on its paper and add the topping. Slide the paper and pastry onto a baking tray to cook.