Clara Gluten Free

The Pastry Saga

A few days ago, I concluded the saga of making edible pastry, which has been fraught with melting crusts and concrete. All this was pre-blog, meaning I took no pictures. Which is probably for the better, because a substantial majority were further across the line of nightmarish than I would have liked. That being said: here is the success story!

Actually, here is the success-story, plus a quiche filling, plus quiche filling that got through a hole in the bottom of the pastry and stuck to the sides of the pastry. (am I the only one who that happens to?). I snagged a technique from a Cook's Illustrated recipe (unfortunately you need an account, and I can't share mine. I would. Promise). To handle the gluten-free aspect, I piled on the binders (eggs and xanthum gum). And then I realized I made an extra crust. Turns out the dough keeps really well in the fridge for a couple of days. Which, of course is lucky for everyone whom I made a free-form apple tart with the next day (I promise to blog that next!!).

Pie Pastry- yields 2, 9" crusts

1 cup + 1/2 cup sorghum flour
1/2 cup + 1 cup tapioca flour
2 sticks butter, very cold, sliced into 1/2" cubes
2 tsp xanthum gum
3/4 tsp baking powder
2 tsp salt
1 tbs sugar
2 eggs

1- Preheat the oven to 450 F. Combine 1 cup sorghum flour, 1/2 cup tapioca flour, xanthum gum, baking powder, salt and sugar in a food processor. Pulse for a few seconds to mix and add the butter and eggs.

2- Pulse the mixture until it looks like a very soft dough. Add the rest of flour, and alternating pulsing and stirring, mix up the dough and the flour until it is not so cohesive. Continue to process until the dough just begins to knead together again. There will probably be a few large clumps and a courser mixture of it in the bottom of the bowl.

3- Pour this mixture into a mixing bowl and press together by hand. Devide into two sections (refrigerate one for a few days if necessary. Soften in the microwave for 15-20 second before using).

4- Heavily flour a work surface with tapioca flour. Roll a dough ball in the flour and roll out. It's best to work from the middle of the dough to the outside. Try to keep the dough of even thickness. If it gets to sticky, dust on more flour over the sticky sections and chill for a while until it is stiffer.

5-When you have about a 12" diameter circle of dough, carefully fold the dough (flour between surfaces of dough) and transfer to your pie pan. Cover in aluminum foil, poke holes in the foil through the dough. Lift up the foil and turn it slightly, to prevent it baking into the dough. If you have pie weights (or dried beans to use as pie weights) pour these into the shell and bake for 7 minutes. Remove the weights and brown the crust, about 10 more minutes. Use as a pre-baked crust, however you would like. 

Quiche Filling- yeilds one deep-dish quiche

Approx 1/4 cup veggies, or left over meat
6 eggs
3 tablespoons milk
1 cup finely grated cheddar cheese

1- Preheat the oven to 425 F. Brown the veggies or the meat in a skillet as desired. In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and milk until foamy. 

2- Line a pre-baked crust with 1/2 of the cheese. Put in your meat/veggies and pour in the eggs. Put most of the rest of the cheese on top. 

3- Bake for 30-40 minutes. You know it is done when the top is brown, no longer liquidy and when you pull it out of the oven, it does not jiggle. Put the last of the cheese on the top of the quiche and melt it in the oven for 1-2 minutes. Pull out, and cool for about 10-15 minutes (so the filling can set up better). Serve warm.  

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