Basic Flaky Piecrust
From Real Simple, November 2012 Issue
Yield: one 9-inch piecrust
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Chill Time: 90 minutes
Total Time: about 2 hours
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, spooned and leveled, plus more for rolling dough
1/2 cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 Tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2-4 Tablespoons ice water
In a food processor, pulse the flour, butter, sugar and salt until the mixture resembles coarse meal with a few pea-size clumps of butter remaining. Add 2 Tablespoons of the water. Pulse until the mixture just holds together with squeezed (add more water as necessary; do not overprocess).
Place the mixture on a sheet of plastic wrap. Shape it into a 1-inch-thick disk, wrap tightly, and chill until firm, at least 1 hour and up to 3 days.
On a floured work surface or piece of parchment, roll out the dough to a 12-inch circle. Carefully transfer the dough to a 9-inch pie plate (avoid stretching). Trim the edge to a 1-inch overhang and tuck it under itself to form a thick rim. Crimp rim as desired.
Chill, covered, for at least 30 minutes and up to 2 days before using.
How to parbake and prebake a pie crust
Line the chilled crust with a piece of foil, leaving an overhang all around. Fill with dried beans or pie weights and bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove the beans and foil. For a parbaked (partially baked) crust, bake until dry and set, 5 to 8 minutes more. For a prebaked crust, bake until golden, 10 to 12 minutes more. Let the crust cool completely before filling.