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Pastry Economics

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Old Style MoneySaving
26 replies 5.2K views
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  • shimmigirl - I always make mine in a foodprocessor - so much quicker. Basically you need half fat to flour for whatever quantity you make. I normally make 8oz plain flour with 2oz lard and 2oz butter. Put the flour into the processor then put the fat in in small cubes. Pulse for a few seconds at a time until there are no big lumps of fat and the mix resembles fine breadcrumbs. I then tip the mix into a large bowl and put some cold water in a jug. Drip the water in a few drops at a time. You really need to get your hands dirty at this point - work the mix until it starts to come together and you can roll the dough around the dish and there are no crumbs in the bottom. If you add the water very slowly you won't add too much. You then need to put the pastry into clingfilm and let it rest in the fridge for 1/2 hour or so - it really is best to work with cold pastry to stop it going greasy. Then just roll out and use for whatever you need. With practice only takes a minute or so. You can add a little caster sugar for sweet shortcrust pastry but I never do - there is usually enough sweetness in the filling (ie apple pie, mince pices) for you not to notice
  • Hi MaxJessDru
    I have a new all singing food processor that bought at start of <Maternity leave, to make cakes etc with 4 year old and make my own baby foods, so I will give the pastry a go during the week and maybe make a pie?
    Thanks
    Shimona
  • This is my great aunt's recipe which I use for my mince pies. I have to disagree with Maxjessdru about sweetening pastry, I do think it makes a difference. I use the recipe below and my MIL uses an unsweetened pastry and even DH says mine are better. To me the lack of sugar in the pastry jars a bit with the sweet filling. I think it is all down to personal preference as usual. This does make a very rich "short" pastry and it is so melt in the mouth. I guess my MIL could just make bad pastry of course but I wouldn't dare suggest it!! I also use this for my apple pies but I prefer my filling on the tart side so maybe that is why I get away with it.


    Rich Shortcrust Pastry
    7 oz plain flour
    4oz marg
    2oz caster sugar
    1 egg

    Amalgamate fat, sugar and egg yolk. Add all flour and rub in.. Moderate oven for 20 mins.
  • HEre's the same aunt's recipe for Cheese pastry, they are copied from her recipe book so sorry if the method is a bit sketchy, I have to admit I haven't got round to trying this one.

    Cheesey Pastry


    3oz flour
    2oz marg
    2oz cheese
    good pinch cayenne
    ¼ tsp salt

    Put flour, salt and cayenne into a bowl. Add marg and grated cheese. Knead mix with hand till well bound. Roll and !!!!!. Cut out shapes. Bake at 350ºF for 10-15 mins.
  • Do you have any instructions for puff pastry? i do end up buying that because the last time I made puff pastry was for my food & nutrition o-level and it took all morning :rotfl:
  • I think one reason for pastry going hard is that it is too wet, this means when you roll it out you add more flour and the balance of fat/flour gets out of sync. I add cold water a desertspoon at a time till it just 'holds' together.

    If you make pastry with a little extra fat, this can help when more flour is used on rolling out.

    Lard and butter gives a nicer pastry than all butter. If you're veggie the Trex white solid fat is a very good substitute.
  • I think one reason for pastry going hard is that it is too wet, this means when you roll it out you add more flour and the balance of fat/flour gets out of sync. I add cold water a desertspoon at a time till it just 'holds' together.

    If you make pastry with a little extra fat, this can help when more flour is used on rolling out.

    Lard and butter gives a nicer pastry than all butter. If you're veggie the Trex white solid fat is a very good substitute.
  • purpleivypurpleivy Forumite
    3.5K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker
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    purpleivy wrote: »
    Pastry Economics

    Home made Short crust Pastry

    Cost 27p/500g

    Saxby’s Short crust Pastry

    Cost 88p/500g from Mr T

    And I used to just chuck em in my shopping bag! Although I don’t use that much pastry, it doesn’t take long to save some pennies (or ££££)

    Was just having a look to see if the price of shop pastry has gone up since I first wrote this in January... It is now listed at 86p! Made mostly of flour, which has gone up in price!
    [SIZE=-1]"Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit. Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad"[/SIZE]
    Trying not to waste food!:j
  • beemuzedbeemuzed Forumite
    2.2K posts
    Mortgage-free Glee!
    That's some lesson in economics! I usually make my own pastry if it's me cooking, but usually it's DH, and when he is cooking a pie he'll buy the pastry as it's something he's never made. Think I'd better show him, don't you?
    Resolution:
    Think twice before spending anything!
  • Ben84Ben84 Forumite
    3.1K posts
    Part of the Furniture 1,000 Posts Combo Breaker
    ✭✭✭✭
    A lot of the cheaper ready made pastry have hydrogenated fats, so probably better for your health to make your own (as well as your pocket).

    They all seem to contain hydrogenated fat, no matter what the price or brand.

    The only pastry I buy is puff pastry as it takes so long to make. I don't like the hydrogenated fats however, but can't find any puff pastry without them. I plan to try making my own again, but I don't find it's a good economic return for the time invested in making it.
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