I was boasting of my piecrust in another thread. Pride goeth before a fall. The latest apple pie (the first pie I had baked in months) flirted with disaster. I used the Bittman piecrust recipe rather than the Joy of Cooking. I thought it was too much butter, but was willing to give it a try. The pie crust came together almost instantly, after perhaps two tablespoons of liquid (a tablespoon of tequila and perhaps a tablespoon from a dripping kitchen faucet), and was too soft to roll out easily. It disintegrated when I tried to transfer it to the pie plate. I ended up patting the bottom crust into place and dropping slabs of crust on top of the apple filling.
The Bittman recipe calls for making the pie crust in a food processor, which I do not have. I did my usual slow crumbling of the butter by hand, until I had a cornmeal-textured blend. I think that must have softened the butter more than it would have softened when cut up by processor blades. The Joy of Cooking recipe, which has a higher flour to butter ratio, works better for hand processing. It's not as buttery, but it is, as I remember, flakier.
The actual pie, while not photogenic, was delicious, The crust was crisp and buttery. Next time, however, I'm going to use the old tried-and-true Joy of Cooking recipe, which works for the tools that I have. Less difficult to roll out and assemble.