Saturday, July 14, 2012

The Easiest Pie Crust Ever by Lucy Burdette

I just finished reading a memoir by a pie baking specialist and she would be shuddering in Iowa to hear me tell you that my go-to pie crust contains no butter and no shortening, just a little milk and vegetable oil. But I find this to be so fast and almost no-fail that I can't make myself try another recipe. This one came from my father-he didn't cook very often, but he loved to make apple pie (when his wife allowed him in the kitchen-LOL.)

I trotted out this pie crust for a small gathering of neighbors on the fourth of July when thunderstorms were predicted and I didn't want to rely on the outdoor grill. The pie crust makes enough for one crust and a lattice top, but since I was making a quiche, I wondered what to do with the lattice?

I answered that question by making a no-crust, lattice only blueberry pie, meant to be served with a scoop of ice cream.


2 cups unbleached flour
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup milk (I used 1%)
1/2 cup vegetable oil (I used organic canola)

Sift the flour with the salt. Measure the milk and oil, pour it into the flour, mix. Now comes the only tricky part. Divide the dough into two parts, 3/5 for the crust, the remainder for the lattice. Place the dough between two sheets of waxed paper and roll it to the correct size. Carefully peel off the top sheet of waxed paper, flip the crust into a pie pan, carefully remove the other sheet of waxed paper. Since you are filling the crust with something delicious anyway, it's perfectly acceptable to patch as needed and then crimp the edges.

I chose a bacon and green chili recipe (on the left) with a ton of cheese and some green onion that I found on, originally from Bon Appetit. I fried the bacon, grated the cheese, and chopped the scallions and then went off to march in the July 4 parade. (I'm on the board of the EC Scranton Library in Madison, CT--that's me with library board president and friend, Ted Mallory.)

The crust is so easy, I could make it when I got home. I pre-baked for five minutes at 425, then lowered the oven temp to 400, layered the ingredients and added the custard. The quiche took about 50 minutes-test with a knife to see if done-and then cooled and set for 10-15.

Meanwhile back to dessert:


4 cups blueberries, washed and dried
1/4 cup sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch (it turned out a little runny, maybe add a dash more if that would bother you?)
lattice crust

Mix the blueberries with sugar and cornstarch. Place them into a well-buttered 1 and 1/2 quart Pyrex bowl. Roll the remaining dough, cut into lengths, weave them into a lattice over the blueberries. 

Sprinkle with a little more sugar. Bake at 400 until the blueberries are bubbling and the crust golden brown, about 30 minutes. Serve with ice cream!

Lucy Burdette is the author of the Key West food critic mysteries. DEATH IN FOUR COURSES, coming in September, can be preordered now. Please follow her on Twitter and like her on facebook!

And should you want to get an idea of what the books are like or more ideas for food and recipes, Lucy recommends her boards on Pinterest...


  1. Sounds lovely--and easy. As I've probably whined several times here, I'm pie-crust challenged. I actually have a spreadsheet with all the variations, and one of these days I'm going to lock myself in the kitchen and try them all, one after another, until I find a winner. Yours is going on ths list!

  2. The secret to rolling it out is to let the waxed paper lap over the counter a little so you can lean against it while rolling. I swear it's never failed me!

  3. A must-try recipe, Lucy, thank you, and I love the "Dream Big, Read" aprons in your photo with Ted. (Ain't that the truth!) The parade must have been great fun. Cheers and have a great weekend ~ Cleo

  4. Pie crusts have been my downfall; I gave up long ago and use the ready-made ones. But this looks easy--I'll have to try it.

    Terry's Place

  5. Our parade is the tops--an old timey, small town affair. And this was the first time I'd marched rather than watching--so much fun!

    Terry, let me know how it turns out! Fingers crossed...

  6. How does this crust compare for flakiness relative to a more usual recipe crust?

  7. I *love* this! I have a go-to pie crust recipe but it makes 5 pie crusts and sometimes I really just want one. This sounds so easy! I have to try it.

    ~ Krista

  8. Libby, I think it holds up pretty well in comparison. It is absolutely definitely certainly better than a store bought crust. I would love to hear how it compares with other crust recipes that you all use!

  9. Looks delish, Lucy. I shared on Facebook. Hope my friends all get a gander. Yum! Love blueberries. And so good for you.

    Daryl aka Avery