I never wanted to bother making pastry from scratch. But I have done it once to find out how easy it is. My shortcrust pastry is very versatile. It can be sweet or savoury. I always use ordinary salted Butter. The softness can be adjusted by adding Cold Water or more Flour.
1 & 2/3 cups Plain Flour
1 Egg *OR 2-3 tablespoons COLD Water OR Milk
1/4 to 1/2 cup Caster Sugar *for sweet pastry
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract *for sweet pastry
50g Parmesan Cheese *grated, for cheesy pastry
2 to 3 teaspoons Instant Coffee Granules *good for chocolate tart
- Food Processor Method: Place dry ingredients and Butter in a food processor, process until mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add lightly beaten Egg (OR COLD Water) and process until dough just comes together. Turn out on a lightly floured surface. Knead gently and shape into a disc.
- Basic Method: Place dry ingredients into a large bowl, add Butter and rub in with fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add lightly beaten Egg (OR COLD Water) and mix to combine. Knead the dough gently on a lightly floured surface and shape into a disc.
- Like-Cookie-Dough Method: Beat softened Butter and Sugar until smooth. Beat in Egg and Vanilla, and mix well. Add Flour and mix to combine, then knead gently and shape into a disc. This is my favourite method for sweet pastry.