Step 1: Cut in shortening
Following your piecrust recipe, use a pastry blender to cut the shortening into the flour mixture. Work just until the pieces are the size of small peas.
Step 4: Roll out the dough
- Flour the rolling surface just enough to keep the dough from sticking.
- Use your hands to slightly flatten the ball of dough.
- Roll slightly flattened dough with a floured rolling pin from the center out to the edges, all of the way around the circle.
- Use light, even strokes to form a 12-inch circle with an even thickness. If dough sticks to your rolling pin or work surface, sprinkle it with additional flour.
Step 10: Shape the edge
To create a pretty fluted edge, place a finger against the inside edge of the pastry. Using the thumb and index finger of the other hand, press the pastry around the finger. Continue around the complete circumference of the pie.
Step 11: Prick the pastry and bake
If you're baking pastry without a filling, prick the bottom and sides all over with a fork. This will prevent the pastry from shrinking while it bakes.
Next, line the pastry shell with a double layer of regular foil or a single layer of heavy-duty foil. The foil prevents the crust from shrinking or losing its shape while it bakes.