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Pie and Tart Crusts with baking powder


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Nick Maglieri in a recent book on baking from around the world (the name escapes me) has been quoted as saying that he puts a small amount of baking powder in nearly all his various pie and tart crusts and that blind baking is a waste of time. (The baking powder is not used for leavening in this case.)

I wonder what pros and home bakers think about this and if they have tried them. I tried a Pate Brisee style crust recipe this way and I was not really impressed with the results. (This one was not for blind baking) In all fairness I usually have to try new crust recipes a couple of times to make adjustments for flour so the result could have been my fault.

Perhaps I misunderstand his intent but I'm not quite sure why the baking powder would help with the problem of say, a lemon tart filling being too liquid to allow the proper cooking of a crust without blind baking. Or is the baking powder simply a solution for the problem of "major shrinkage"?

If there is technique to this that does not sacrifice the individual qualities of the various crust styles then I would more than happy to jump on the baking powder band wagon.

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a good friend of mine once mistook the bisquick jar for the flour jar, and finished her standard pie crust with a couple of tablespoons. That crust was the lightest and flakiest of hers I've ever taken.

I'm suspect it's the additional leavening that makes the crust a little lighter and flakier.

I don't really know about the lack of blind baking though. methinks that it would lend to soggy tart crusts, though I've never risked it.

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i find that if i want my pastry cases to be light, the less handling the better with only the tiniest amount of water. i also don't blind bake - just put the pie dish on a hot baking tray already in the oven and my crusts always turn out golden and light. i don't chill the pastry before baking nor do i use cold butter and really believe that it is the water that causes shrinkage and a tough pastry. omitting the water makes the pastry too short, so i add a spoonful or 2, depending on the quantity i am making.

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Nick Maglieri in a recent book on baking from around the world (the name escapes me) has been quoted as saying that he puts a small amount of baking powder in nearly all his various pie and tart crusts and that blind baking is a waste of time. (The baking powder is not used for leavening in this case.)

I wonder what pros and home bakers think about this and if they have tried them. I tried a Pate Brisee style crust recipe this way and I was not really impressed with the results. (This one was not for blind baking)  In all fairness I usually have to try new crust recipes a couple of times to make adjustments for flour so the result could have been my fault.

Perhaps I misunderstand his intent but I'm not quite sure why the baking powder would help with the problem of say, a lemon tart filling being too liquid to allow the proper cooking of a crust without blind baking. Or is the baking powder simply a solution for the problem of "major shrinkage"?

If there is technique to this that does not sacrifice the individual qualities of the various crust styles then I would more than happy to jump on the baking powder band wagon.

They don't want to get a raw dough in the bottom that why they add baking powder, somebody will use baking soda.

because baking soda can made the colour more deep.

if u want the different testure of the curst that depend u use what menthod.

and u let the dough rest enough that will not shrinkage.

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I guess the only way to find out is to try it. Malgieri's book does have a lemon tart that is staright baked so it obviously is possible.

One of my real pet peaves is buying a tart from a bakery and finding the bottom center of the crust still raw. It happens more often than you'd think and from some pretty good places.

The suggestion of putting something like a baking stone in the oven to hold in the heat makes sense and is worth trying.

Of course a production kitchen would most likely use a convection oven so the stone would not be very practical.

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baking powder is not going to make the doigh flaky. never will. Baking powder is only going to make what moisture it has absorbed rise with the strength of the flour and or eggs.

If you make your dough properly, baking powder is neglegible or even damage some in my sense. With a properly made pie dough, properly cut in at the right temp, kept at the right temp, folded properly, and lined properly you will have all the flaky goodness you could ever want, any more would be puff pastry.

Dean Anthony Anderson

"If all you have to eat is an egg, you had better know how to cook it properly" ~ Herve This

Pastry Chef: One If By Land Two If By Sea

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Chiantiglace there is not denying what you are saying. The question is more about whether baking powder allows you to forgo blind baking. This applies to other types of dough then Pate Brisee as well. Pate Sucre etc. where flakiness is not the desired result.

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