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Ms. Dee’s Pie Crust Recipe is my mother’s and if you ever use it you’ll use none other

June 22, 2011

In short, Mother Knows Best — at least she does when it comes to a recipe for pie crust.   Her simple trick works so well I have never had a failed pie crust when using her recipe and I have tried many many other pie crust recipes.  Mum grew up on a farm where eggs were plentiful perhaps this is why her passed down recipe has an egg in it.


  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1-1/3 cup cool or cold water used to measure out Crisco
  • 2/3 cup Crisco shortening (see trick* below)
  • 1 egg (small or medium eggs are fine)
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/4 teaspoon white vinegar (but I’ve used apple cider vinegar in a pinch)
  • flour on board for rolling out dough


  1. Measure out flour and salt into a flour sifter
  2. Sift flour and salt into a large bowl; set aside
  3. Place exactly 1-1/3 cups water into a clear glass 2 cup measuring cup with easy to read measurement markings
  4. Trick*–Add spoonfuls of Crisco to the 2 cup measuring cup you filled with 1-1/3 cups water until the water rises to the 2 cup measurement mark — this is Mum’s simple trick to insure she has exactly 2/3 cup of Crisco needed for the crust
  5. After reaching the 2 cup mark discard the water and dump the Crisco into the large bowl of sifted flour and salt
  6. Using a pastry cutter (or use two knifes in a crisscross fashion) cut Crisco into the flour until it looks like tiny balls disbursed throughout
  7. In the 2 cup measuring cup (already dirty!) place the egg, 4 teaspoons water and the 1/4 teaspoon white vinegar and stir until blended together
  8. Make a small well in the center of the flour to accept the liquid ingredients and add one tablespoon of the combined egg & water mixture at a time to the flour mixture
  9. Using your hands (I know, just do it!) mix together by turning and squeezing until a ball begins to form and mixture pulls away from the side of the bowl — You may have some liquid left over or you may need another bit of water just watch the dough for when it pulls away from the side of the bowl into a ball it’s done
  10. Divide dough into three or four balls (depending on size of pie pan you have) and give them a love pat to flatten some and wrap each ball into plastic wrap
  11. Place each plastic wrapped dough ball into the refrigerator for at least one hour before rolling out.  The dough needs to be cold to work  —  The dough can be placed into the freezer for later use at this time, as well, see storage of pie crust below
  12. When ready to roll out dough liberally sprinkle flour on board and using a rolling pin roll out to desired thickness for the pie you are making — usually 1/8-1/4″ thickness — pie shell will pre-bake nicely in a 400 degree oven in about 12 to 15 minutes

Storage of pie crust:  Double-wrap into plastic wrap and place into a freezer bag.  Close and place in deep freezer for up to six (6) months.

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