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melting tart crust


amccomb
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A friend of mine is attempting to make tarts in molded tart pans and is having trouble with her crust. She asked me what she was doing wrong, and my only guess was too much butter, but I am not experienced with these things, so I thought I would ask here!

She doesn't follow a recipe. Here is what she says:

"I think I roughly use the formula of 1 stick of butter to maybe 1 to 1/12 c

flour, sometimes an egg yolk. Cutting in the butter with knives (since I don't

have that kitchenaid), making the ball and then trying to roll it out and fit

it into the pan.. that kind of thing. I don't have an exact recipe or

technique which is why I think it doesn't totally work. I'd like for it to

maintain the shape of the fluted tart pan. But for me the buttery edges start

melting and sliding inside."

Does anyone have a recipe that sounds similar that works well, or an idea why her technique isn't working?

Edited by amccomb (log)
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A friend of mine is attempting to make custard tarts and is having trouble with her crust.  She asked me what she was doing wrong, and my only guess was too much butter, but I am not experienced with these things, so I thought I would ask here!

Apparently, she doesn't follow a recipe.  Here is what she says:

"I think I roughly use the formula of 1 stick of butter to maybe 1 to 1/12 c

flour, sometimes an egg yolk. Cutting in the butter with knives (since I don't

have that kitchenaid), making the ball and then trying to roll it out and fit

it into the pan.. that kind of thing. I don't have an exact recipe or

technique which is why I think it doesn't totally work. I'd like for it to

maintain the shape of the fluted tart pan. But for me the buttery edges start

melting and sliding inside."

Does anyone have a recipe that sounds similar that works well, or an idea why her technique isn't working?

Hi Amccomb,

This is just a guess, as your friend doesn't tell us *when* the crust starts slipping and sliding (in the oven, before the oven....). But all tart (and pie, for that matter) crusts benefit from a hard chill before going in the oven. This relaxes the gluten in the flour as well as "sets" the edges so that they're better able to retain their shape when the pan hits the hot oven. I hope this helps!

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Hi Amccomb,

This is just a guess, as your friend doesn't tell us *when* the crust starts slipping and sliding (in the oven, before the oven....).  But all tart (and pie, for that matter) crusts benefit from a hard chill before going in the oven.  This relaxes the gluten in the flour as well as "sets" the edges so that they're better able to retain their shape when the pan hits the hot oven.  I hope this helps!

Ok, I've asked her, and she said she takes it out of the freezer, then puts it in the oven, and once in the oven, the buttery edges start to melt and slip into the pan.

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this is the one i use

Yield: 3 Ib 14 oz

Butter 16 oz

Powdered sugar 10 oz

Eggs 3

Salt 2 tsp

Vanilla 1 tblsp

Almond flour 4 oz

Pastry flow 1 lb 11 oz

1, Using the paddle attachment mix butter until creamy, add powdered sugar, combine

well.

2. Add eggs gradually; add salt, vanilla and almond flour.

3. Add flour in one step, mix on low speed until combined.

4. Chill the dough for several hours or over night

i just use 4 oz of almonds and pulse it with the powdered sugar to make the almond flour

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Hi Amccomb,

This is just a guess, as your friend doesn't tell us *when* the crust starts slipping and sliding (in the oven, before the oven....).  But all tart (and pie, for that matter) crusts benefit from a hard chill before going in the oven.  This relaxes the gluten in the flour as well as "sets" the edges so that they're better able to retain their shape when the pan hits the hot oven.  I hope this helps!

Ok, I've asked her, and she said she takes it out of the freezer, then puts it in the oven, and once in the oven, the buttery edges start to melt and slip into the pan.

Maybe blind baking first? Making sure the weights/beans fill the entire pie pan. I've had the same problem, which is worse with butter crusts, or anyway in my experience. So I began to blind bake those crusts, using aluminum foil folded a bit over the sides of the pan and beans pushed flush against the pan sides and mounded in a hill.

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Hi Amccomb,

This is just a guess, as your friend doesn't tell us *when* the crust starts slipping and sliding (in the oven, before the oven....).  But all tart (and pie, for that matter) crusts benefit from a hard chill before going in the oven.  This relaxes the gluten in the flour as well as "sets" the edges so that they're better able to retain their shape when the pan hits the hot oven.  I hope this helps!

Ok, I've asked her, and she said she takes it out of the freezer, then puts it in the oven, and once in the oven, the buttery edges start to melt and slip into the pan.

Maybe blind baking first? Making sure the weights/beans fill the entire pie pan. I've had the same problem, which is worse with butter crusts, or anyway in my experience. So I began to blind bake those crusts, using aluminum foil folded a bit over the sides of the pan and beans pushed flush against the pan sides and mounded in a hill.

Does anyone have a recipe that doesn't require blind baking? I mean after you chill the tart pans lined with your dough.

I make my dough , chill it, then fill my pans with it, chill again for at least 1 hour, but still need to put some beans or rice in it or the sides slip down.

I used to work at a resort in which the recipe we used ( didn't remember to write down when I worked there ) didn't require blind baking, as long as the dough was chilled well once put in the pans.

I ask becasue it is very time consuming to mess with beans or rice when you have many smaller size tarts to do.

Thanks,

Jason

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I agree with the blind baking using rice, beans or pie weights. I do this for all my tart shells. A few other ideas - try to make sure the tart sides are vertical on the inside, if they're sloped the shell seems to slump more. Also, maybe the butter is not incorporated well enough. I usually mix the dough in a processor, not a mixer or by hand.

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I have found a lot of tart dough formulas need to be blind baked, or the sides will "wilt" or some such thing......I hate blind baking though, because it is a time consuming pain in the a$$!!

Luckily I found a pretty good recipe for tart dough that bakes off really nice and doesn't need the ol' rice or beans or pie weights......

This dough shrinks a LITTLE bit when baking, but just a little.

Big Honkin' Batch:

4 lb butter

1 lb 8 oz sugar

1/2 oz salt

Mix til smooth and creamy, but NOT light and fluffy!

1 lb 2 oz whole eggs

Add eggs, scrape down bowl, mix til uniformish

6 lbs pastry flour (AP is ok too)

Add and incorporate, don't overmix.

Roll out and use as needed.

Edited to add: Oh yeah, chill the dough first. Almost forgot that. Makes it a lot easier to roll out. :raz:

Edited by chefpeon (log)
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I have found a lot of tart dough formulas need to be blind baked, or the sides will "wilt" or some such thing......I hate blind baking though, because it is a time consuming pain in the a$$!!

Luckily I found a pretty good recipe for tart dough that bakes off really nice and doesn't need the ol' rice or beans or pie weights......

This dough shrinks a LITTLE bit when baking, but just a little.

Big Honkin' Batch:

4 lb butter

1 lb 8 oz sugar

1/2 oz salt

Mix til smooth and creamy, but NOT light and fluffy!

1 lb 2 oz whole eggs

Add eggs, scrape down bowl, mix til uniformish

6 lbs pastry flour (AP is ok too)

Add and incorporate, don't overmix.

Roll out and use as needed.

Edited to add: Oh yeah, chill the dough first. Almost forgot that. Makes it a lot easier to roll out.  :raz:

Thank you for the recipe chefpeon. I will try it out soon.

Jason

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chefpeon,

have you already broken this down into "small managable batch" proportions? I actually need a "big honkin' batch" at the end stage for many of my recipes, but always try them out in home sized portions first, and if someone else has already done the math I don't need to reinvent the wheel :smile:

Do you suffer from Acute Culinary Syndrome? Maybe it's time to get help...

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have you already broken this down into "small managable batch" proportions?

Ok here's the "Micro Batch":

8 oz butter (2 sticks)

3 oz sugar (that's about 7 Tbsp)

1 tsp salt

Mix til smooth and creamy but NOT light and fluffy!

2 large eggs

Add eggs, scrape down bowl, mix til uniformish

12 oz ap flour (that's a little over 2 1/2 cups)

Add and incorporate, don't overmix

Chill, then roll and use as needed.

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The recipes for Pate Sucree--Sweet Tart Crusts are more of a cookie dough than a pastry like you'd use for a flaky pie crust. Therefore, cutting the butter into the flour isn't mixing it enough, so it won't have any holding power. You need to mix the butter and sugar and egg or yolk in the recipe as if you were making cookies--cream till smooth and creamy but not too much air--not fluffy. Then mix in the flour and other dry ingredients.

These are the ingredients I use:

sift together and set aside:

1 1/2 cups (210 grams) all purpose flour

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon (125 grams) unsalted butter, just soft, not mushy

1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated white sugar

1 large egg, lightly beaten

Cream the butter just till smooth, gradually blend in the sugar and beat until just smooth, add the egg and beat until just blended, then fold in the flour/salt and mix until it just makes a ball. The key is to be gentle and not overwork it, but incorporate everything smoothly.

It's going to be sticky.

Flatten dough into disk, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 20 minutes or until firm.

I use two layers of wide plastic wrap to roll it out, rolling a little, then loosening the wrap flip it over and loosent he wrap on the other side(it gets stretched and rolls into the dough, preventing smooth rolling. Doing the loosening each time, helps, and it doesn't take very long to roll it out to size. Then remove the top layer of wrap, and flip the dough onto the tart pan, gently settling it into the pan and just easing it to fit. Don't press too hard or stretch it. Prick the bottom all over with a fork--this prevents large bubbles from distorting your shell as it bakes.

Chill it hard and blind bake. I line the shell with parchment and fill it with dried beans or rice or pie weights, bake at 400 degF for 15-20 min to set it, then remove the weights and bake aother 10-12 minutes to lightly brown all evenly.

Cool it on a rack and use as desired.

It's not the destination, but the journey!
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have you already broken this down into "small managable batch" proportions?

Ok here's the "Micro Batch":

Thanks! I hope to try it out this weekend and per this thread I think I'll try it in one of my cute little tart pans :smile:

Do you suffer from Acute Culinary Syndrome? Maybe it's time to get help...

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  • 2 weeks later...

For anyone who hasn't tried it, chefpeon's recipe is a winner.

It had minimal shrinkage, no collapsing, popped out of the tart wells like a dream once cooked, and was not too sweet lke some pate sucree recipes I've known. (though you can still eat the raw crust like cookie dough) I like them not too sweet so the focus is more on the filling, but the crust still complements. Also this is a nicely sturdy crust - good for transporting.

The only note I'd add to the recipe is to have plenty of flour on hand for your board and rolling pin as it's a really sticky dough (but nicely forgiving about rerolling the scraps)

I'm guesstimating that the micro batch will make ninety 1-3/4" tartlettes. "Mice" ate some of the dough in advance :raz:, so I can't be certain on that.

Do you suffer from Acute Culinary Syndrome? Maybe it's time to get help...

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