There’s nothing more American than homemade pie. We’ve all succumbed to the pressure of time and purchased a frozen pie crust, but the truth of the matter is that pie crusts are super simple to make (once you master the technique) and can be easily adjusted for your health and diet restrictions. If you have a free afternoon, I recommend making a whole batch of pie crusts and freezing them yourself if you think you’ll need a crust in a pinch.
This recipe was shared by a foodie friend of mine whose grandmother supported her family during the Depression by baking. Her words of advice for first-time crust makers are: “The trick to good pie crust is to be gentle and treat it very lightly.” Thanks, Gran!
Easy Homemade Pie Crust
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cold water
Mix shortening, flour, and salt together with a fork or a pastry blender until very crumbly. Add as much water as needed to hold together, and mix lightly with a fork.
Roll gently on a floured pastry cloth to about an inch larger than pie plate. Fold carefully in half, lift to pie plate, and unfold. Press into pan. For a single-crust pie, trim with a small knife to about 1/2 inch beyond rim. Fold up, and pinch so edge of pie is raised from rim.