Pâte sucrée (sablée)

For two galettes – 10-1/2 inch pie pans.

3 cups of all purpose flour
2-1/2 sticks of sweet butter, softened
1/2 cup of granulated sugar
1/4 tsp of salt

  • Combine the ingredients in a bowl and work until you can form a ball that holds together.
  • Place on the table and smear the mixture with the palm of your hand a few times.
  • Divide into two pieces.
  • Reserve one piece and refrigerate.
  • Roll the other into a 12-inch round about 1/4 inch thick.
  • It helps to roll the dough on a plastic sheet, which provides good support when the dough is lifted around the rolling pin, then unrolled into the pie shell.  This step can be tricky when the dough is too soft, since it breaks easily.
  • Either refrigerate it for awhile or simply press the dough in the pie pan by hand.
  • Make a border about 1/2 inch high.
  • Make it thicker at the base, to prevent it from collapsing during cooking.
  • Cut off any dough above that, and reserve for another pie, with the other half of the dough in the refrigerator.
  • Refrigerate until firm while preheating the oven at 400°F.
  • Cook for 12 to 15 minutes.

For a different dessert, cook the shell entirely for about 25 minutes.  Fill with crème patissière and top with fresh berries.

Pâte feuilleté

3 cups all‑purpose unbleached flour
1-1/2 tsp salt
6 Tbsp of unsalted butter, room temperature
1-1/8 cups of ice water
1-1/2 cups of unsalted butter (3 sticks)
1/2 cup of flour

  • Place the flour, salt and the 6 Tbsp of butter in a bowl or in the food processor.
  • Blend to the consistency of cornmeal.
  • On a pastry surface make a well 10 inches in diameter with the mixture.
  • Pour 1 cup of water  in the center.
  • Quickly flip the top of the well over the water covering all the surface.
  • Finish blending gently with fingers working all around the outside of the well.
  • Form shreds rather than a ball, this way the dough is not handled too much and does not become elastic.
  • Finish blending by cutting in 4 pieces with pastry cutter, making 1/4 turn counterclockwise and cutting again (about 4‑8 times depending on humidity).
  • Form into a loose, crumbly pastry ball.
  • If there are crumbs of dough that are not adhering to the ball you may add some of the remaining water.
  • Wrap in wax paper and chilled for 40 minutes.
  • About 10 minutes before dough is chilled, remove sticks of butter from the refrigerator and pound with a rolling pin until soft.
  • Knead 1/2 cup of flour into the butter.
  • Work together until it is malleable but cold (same texture as the chilled dough).
  • Form into a 5 inch square.
  • Roll the chilled dough into a large circle.
  • Place block of butter in the center and fold dough over it.
  • Roll into a rectangle 18″x9″.
  • Fold into thirds like a business letter (fold bottom then top over it).
  • Turn the dough counterclockwise 1/4 turn (like a book with binding on left).
  • Roll out again in a rectangle 18″x9″.
  • Fold into thirds, wrap and chill for 1 hour. (this is 2 turns)
  • Two more turns.
  • Chill again for 2 hours.
  • The last two turns should be done no more  than 2 hours before the final shaping to obtain the highest rise.
  • Roll out for final shape.