Sunday, August 9, 2009

Baking just got a little easier...Yeah!!

Ever think back to a time when you didn't have something you now take for granted, like your cell phone or your computer and wonder how you ever lived without it? Well, the rainy weather, once again, gave me a "free" day today ( no farmer's market) so I decided that it was high time for my next small appliance purchase to make my life a little easier!! Yup... I am now the proud owner of a food processor!! A 14 cup processor to be exact !! I drove to about 5 different stores before I realized the first store I stopped in was the best deal.
I couldn't wait to get home and make something with it!!
I read the recipe booklet that came with it and chose the basic pastry since I had been taught by my Mom how to make a great pie crust by hand but with this machine...what a snap!!
The crust came out so very good and so very easy. Yes, I'm so used to slaving over everything I do , whether it's baking or crafting or painting...or whatever. It's as if I don't spend tons of time working on a project it just won't be good. Boy was I wrong ! You should have seen me in my quilting days. I actually started out making quilts by sewing each piece by hand , then doing all the quilting by hand..Yikes!! Life's too short, ya' know?!!
Since I only had frozen blueberries, I made a few small rustic blueberry tarts. I just sprinkled the frozen berries with some sugar, lemon zest and cornstarch , made the dough, chilled it and rolled it out, filling each with the berries. I brushed the dough with a little beaten egg and sprinkled coarse sugar over top and baked. The crust is quick, easy and delicious!!
Hmmm...wonder what I should try next. Maybe pizza!!

Basic Pastry Dough ( this is half the original recipe)
1 1/3 cups AP flour
1 stick very cold unsalted butter,cut into 1" pieces
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 cup ice water
Use metal blade to process flour,butter and salt til mixture is like coarse meal ( about 8 seconds). Add ice water and pulse til dough begins to clump together. Do not let it form a ball. Wrap in plastic forming dough into a disc and chill in fridge 1 hour. Roll onto a lightly floured surface. This should be enough to make 1 pie shell with a little left over, maybe enough for a lattice top crust. Bake at the temp. recommended for whatever pie you're making. (I baked mine at 425.)

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