Savory, Flaky Pie Crust

Man, oh, man, if there's anything better than hot, fresh pastry on a cold, blustery day, it could only be the combination of a melt-in-your-mouth, flaking pastry filled with piping hot, creamy, and savory veg. WELP, we've got cold, blustery days in droves (it's currently snowing outside of my window, in fact!), so I suppose the appropriate response could ONLY be to make 3 vegetable pot pies in four days. That's a totally normal amount, right?

Okay, mebbe not, but I had good reason! I knew when we hosted my partner's parents in our home last weekend that I wanted to create something delicious, hearty, and homey that wouldn't force me to spend too much of the visit chopping or stirring instead of socializing. I decided on a childhood revival: the chicken pot pie of my memories is a steaming dream, with herbed crust and a filling that makes you want to crawl inside and wait out winter. It's a dish I hadn't eaten for years, and other than the occasional Amy's dairy-free, never in the years since I went vegan. But I've made up for that now! Overcompensated, even. Because I'd just invented these recipes, I wanted to make a tester pie the night before and make sure everything worked out the way it was supposed to, flavor and texture-wise. It did NOT disappoint the first night. The second night we ate the pie I'd made in the deeper pie dish, and I learned I definitely prefer it that way. The third night I made the sad discovery that I hadn't taken a single decent picture of either pie. Not even sorta decent.

Obviously, another pie was required. Which brings me to the final incarnation, and the best of all! I'll put the recipe for the whole dish up here tomorrow, but I wanted to give you guys the recipe for the pie crust separately, because this could be used for SO much more than your classic pot pie, and it's worth filing away on its own! I'm thinking hand pies, quiches, you name it!

Savory Pie Crust:

makes 2 9-in rounds (enough for 1 covered pie or 2 uncovered pies)

- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour

- 1 1/4 tsp salt

- 1/2 tsp thyme

- pinch rosemary

- 15 tbsp cold butter, cubed (I used Earth Balance)

- 6-7 tbsp ice water

1. In a food processor, combine the flour, salt, thyme, and rosemary for the crust. (If not using a food processor, whisk the dry ingredients together)

2. Pulse to combine, then add half of the cold, cubed butter, and pulse 3 or 4 times. Add the rest of the butter and pulse until the pieces are no larger than pea-sized. (If not using a food processor, use either a pastry cutter or two knives to chop the butter into pea-sized pieces)

3. Add 6 tbsp of ice water and pulse (or gently toss with a fork or spatula) until a dough just starts to come together. If it’s too dry to hold together, add up to 1 tbsp more of the water.

4. Gather into two discs, one slightly larger than the other, wrap up tight, and chill in the fridge for at least an hour before baking.

5. When ready to use, roll the dough out on a well-floured surface to about 1/4 in thick. Transfer the dough to your dish, trim the edges, and chill until ready to fill or bake.

Enjoy, and check back tomorrow for the pot pie recipe!

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