7 Tips to Help You Avoid a Soggy Pie Crust

When you asked us for ways to avoid a soggy pie crust, we knew it was no simple answer. Moisture in the air and liquid content of the filling are all variables to consider when you're trying to protect the crunch of your crust. With these 7 simple tips, you too can fight the liquid demons.

1. Use less water

Use the liquid amount as a guideline and sprinkle it on a tablespoon at a time just until your dough comes together. The pastry should still be shaggy but stay together when you press it. Let it rest in the fridge before you roll it out and you'll be surprised at how much water the flour will continue to absorb.

2. Blind-bake your crust

To do this, line your pie plate with your pastry then line the pastry with parchment paper, leaving a little overhang. Fill the parchment-lined pastry all the way up to the top with pie weights or dried beans, pressing them down firmly.

This helps with even baking and weighs down the pastry so air bubbles don't form and the sides don't slip down when the butter starts to melt. Bake in the top third of your oven at 400°F (200°C) for 15-20 minutes or until the edge starts to turn golden.

Remove the weights and parchment and bake the crust for another 10 minutes or until the base feels dry to the touch.

3. Fight the puff a better way

Some recipes suggest you poke holes in the crust to stop it from puffing up. The danger with this is the liquid from your filling can seep down into these holes, making the base soggy. Opt for blind-baking and press the beans down firmly to stop your crust from puffing up.

4. Egg wash

Before you add your filling, brush your blind-baked shell with egg wash (beat an egg with a tablespoon of water) and bake for another 5-10 minutes until the egg solidifies and seals it. If the crust is browning too much, tent the pie plate with aluminum foil.

5. Seal your crust with chocolate

If the flavour pairs with your cream or custard pie filling, skip the egg wash and brush a layer of melted dark or white chocolate over the cooked pie crust. The chocolate will harden and create a seal to protect your crust.

6. Drain the fruit

If you're making a fruit pie, drain your fruit first by placing a colander over a bowl to catch the juices. This is especially important when you're using frozen or particularly juicy fruits. Boil the reserved juices to reduce them before adding them back to the filling.

7. Use thickeners

Don't skimp out on the cornstarch, flour, or other thickeners that may be in the pie filling recipe. They will help to thicken the liquid in the filling so it doesn't seep into the pie crust and make it soggy.

Practice your pie-making skills with these Tested-Till-Perfect recipes:

    Best-Ever Apple Pie
    Old-Fashioned Blueberry Pie
    No-Bake Chocolate Marble Cheesecake Pie
    Winterberry Pie
    Retro Banana Cream Pie

Tags: better baking, cakes & pastries


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