Flaky Pastry for 2-Crust Pie

Traditional Method

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


Appears in

Farm Journal's Complete Pie Cookbook

Farm Journal's Complete Pie Cookbook

By Nell B. Nichols

Published 1965

  • About


  • 2 c. sifted flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ¾ c. vegetable shortening or c. lard
  • 4 to 5 tblsp. cold water


  • Combine flour and salt in mixing bowl. Cut in shortening with pastry blender or with two knives until mixture is the consistency of coarse cornmeal or tiny peas.
  • Sprinkle on cold water, 1 tblsp. at a time, tossing mixture lightly and stirring with fork. Add water each time to the driest part of mixture. The dough should be just moist enough to hold together when pressed gently with a fork. It should not be sticky.
  • Shape dough in smooth ball with hands, and roll. Or if you are not ready to make the pie, wrap it in waxed paper and refrigerate 30 minutes or until ready to fill and bake pie.
  • Makes crust for 1 (8" or 9") 2-crust pie, 2 (8" or 9") pie shells, 8 or 9 (4") tart shells, 1 (9" or 10") pie with latticed top or topping for 2 (8" or 9") deep-dish pies

To Make 2-Crust Pie

  • Divide dough in half and shape in 2 flat balls, smoothing edges so there are no breaks.

Bottom Crust

  • Press 1 dough ball in flat circle with hands on lightly floured surface. Roll it lightly with short strokes from center in all directions to ⅛" thickness, making a 10" to 11" circle. Fold rolled dough in half and ease it loosely into pie pan with fold in center. Unfold and fit into pan, using care not to stretch dough. Gently press out air pockets with finger tips. Make certain there are no openings for juices to escape.
  • Trim edge even with pie pan. Then roll top crust.

Top Crust

  • Roll second ball of dough like the first one (for bottom crust). Put filling in pastry-lined pan. Fold pastry circle in half; lift it to the top of the pie with fold in center. Gently unfold over top of pie. Trim with scissors to ½" beyond edge of pie. Fold top edge under bottom crust and press gently with fingers to seal and to make an upright edge. Crimp edge as desired.
  • Cut vents in top crust or prick with fork to allow steam to escape. (Or cut vents before placing pastry on top of pie.) Bake as pie recipe directs.