Sweet Pastry Crust
1 1/2 cups (200 grams) cake flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (100 grams) unsalted butter
2/3 cup (80 grams) confectioners' sugar
2 egg yolks
Sweet Pastry Crust: In a separate bowl, sift or whisk together the flour and salt. Set aside. Place the butter in your mixer with lemon zest and beat until softened. Add sugar and beat until light and fluffy. Gradually add the egg yolk, beating just until incorporated. Don't over mix or the butter will separate and lighten in color. Add flour mixture all at once and mix just until it forms a ball. Don't overwork or pastry will be hard when baked.
Flatten dough into disk, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 20 minutes or until firm.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry (about 1/8 inch (3 mm) thick). To prevent the pastry from sticking to the counter and to ensure uniform thickness, keep lifting up and turning the pastry a quarter turn as you roll (always roll from the center of the pastry outwards to get uniform thickness). To make sure it is the right size, take your tart pan, flip it over, and place it on the rolled out pastry. The pastry should be about an inch larger than pan.
When the pastry is rolled to the desired size, gently lay in pan, lightly press pastry into bottom and up sides of pan. Roll your rolling pin over top of pan to get rid of excess pastry. With a thumb up movement, again press dough into pan. Cover and refrigerate for 20 minutes to chill the butter and to rest the gluten.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (180 degrees C), poke small holes in all the bottom of the pie crust with a fork and and place rack in center of oven. Bake mini crust for 10 to 14 minutes until crust is dry and lightly golden brown. Cool crust on wire rack before filling.
Some cooks also swear by using some kind of pie crust weights, such as beads or beans, during the pre-baking. They say this prevents the pie crust from shrinking away from the sides of the pan. It is not necessary because:
After the rolled-out dough has been transferred to the pie pan, let it relax in the refrigerator for another 20-30 minutes before filling. This will prevent the dough from shrinking during baking. And, in this regard, it is very IMPORTANT puncture the bottom of the crust very well with a fork.
Pastry Cream - Crema Pasticcera
1/2 cup (125 ml) whole milk
½ cup (125 ml) cream
1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
2 large egg yolks
1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated white sugar
1/8 cup (20 grams) all-purpose flour
1 tablespoons (10 grams) cornstarch (corn flour)
3/4 tablespoon (10 ml) lemon juice or liqueur (Grand Marnier, Brandy, Kirsch) (optional)
Italian Pastry Cream – Crema pasticcera : In a medium-sized stainless steel bowl, mix the sugar and egg yolks together with a wooden spoon. (Never let the mixture sit too long or you will get pieces of egg forming.) Sift the flour and cornstarch (corn flour) together and then add to the egg mixture, mixing until you get a smooth paste. Set aside.
Meanwhile, in a saucepan combine the milk, cream and split vanilla bean on medium heat until boiling. (The milk will foam up to the top of pan when done, so watch carefully.) Remove from heat and add slowly to egg mixture, whisking constantly to prevent curdling. (If you get a few pieces of egg (curdling) in the mixture, pour through a strainer.) Remove vanilla bean, scrape out seeds, and add the seeds to the egg mixture. (The vanilla bean can be dried and placed in your sugar bowl to give the sugar a vanilla flavor. This sugar can then be used in baking where you would like a vanilla-flavored sugar, e.g. pies, cakes, cookies.)
Place the egg mixture back into a medium saucepan and cook over medium heat until boiling, whisking constantly. When it boils, whisk mixture constantly for another 30 - 60 seconds until it becomes very thick and it is hard to stir.
Remove from heat and immediately whisk in the liqueur (if using). Pour into a clean bowl and immediately cover the surface with plastic wrap to prevent a crust from forming. Cool. If not using right away refrigerate until needed, up to 3 days. Beat before using to get rid of any lumps that may have formed.
Have a nice day :)