Shortcrust Pastry (Sweet, Savoury, Lemon and Almond, Coconut)

You can’t beat making and using your own Shortcrust Pastry in a recipe. Whilst using shop-bought is easy, it can’t replace the fresh buttery taste, melt in the mouth texture and the sheer satisfaction of knowing that your dish is completely home made.

The hardest part about making your own pastry is needing to make it 40 mins ahead of using it in your recipe. Now, that’s not actually very hard at all, considering that in those 40 mins, you are probably making/preparing the filling for your pastry anyway! The reason for the 40 minutes is 30 for it to rest in the fridge and 10 for it to come back to room temperature so that it rolls perfectly.

Shortcrust Pastry is perfect for plate pies, small individual pies, tarts, flans, quiches,  bite sized treats (all sweet or savoury dishes).

No matter the amount of pastry you need for your recipe, the butter is always half of the amount of the flour you use. If you need to make the recipe half as big again – add 1 more egg / half as small – use 1 egg less.

It takes cold hands to make good pastry and very little handling. Because I am a warm handed person, I choose to use a food processor. You can still, if you wish make breadcrumbs with the flour and butter using your hands in the traditional way, but ensure you wash your hands in cold water first and resist over-handling the pastry mix.

The following recipes make 500g (just over 1 lb) of pastry, which is enough for a 23cm / 9″ Pie Dish / Flan Ring or 12 individual small pies ….. with some left over!

Now you just need to choose which Shortcrust Pastry to use.

Savoury Shortcrust Pastry:

  • 250g  (9oz) plain flour
  • 125g (4.5oz) cold butter, cubed
  • 2 egg yolks
  • large pinch of salt
  • 1-4 tbsp of water (if needed)

Sweet Shortcrust Pastry:

  • 250g  (9oz) plain flour
  • 125g (4.5oz) cold butter, cubed
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 tbsp caster sugar
  • large pinch of salt
  • 1-4 tbsp of milk or single cream (if needed)

Put the flour and butter in a food processor and blitz to form breadcrumbs. Add the egg yolks (and if making sweet pastry, the sugar) and a pinch of salt.  Continue to blitz until a ball of dough is formed.

If using your hands, rub the flour and the butter together until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.

HonieTip: my Home Economics teacher used to say that lifting your hands up, lightly rubbing and allowing the breadcrumbs to fall from your fingers allowed air to flow through, keeping the mix cool).

Add the egg yolks (and if making sweet pastry, the sugar) and a pinch of salt and stir together with a knife. Squeeze the mixture into a dough ball.

If the pastry feels very dry add the water (milk or cream for sweet pastry). The pastry will be more tender if you can manage without, so add a little at a time.

Once you have your dough ball, wrap in cling film and pop into the fridge for 30 minutes. Remember to take the pastry out 10 minutes before rolling to warm. If the pastry is too cold, it will crumble when rolling.

Roll your pastry on a lightly floured board/surface and use as required.

I use Sweet Shortcrust Pastry in my Bakewell Tart.

Lemon & Almond Pastry:

  • 115g (4oz) butter softened
  • 60g (2.5oz) caster sugar
  • Seeds of vanilla pod (or 2 tsp vanilla extract)
  • Finely grated zest of a lemon
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 200g (7oz) plain flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 45g (1.5oz) ground almonds

Cream the butter, sugar, vanilla and lemon zest in a bowl until well combined. Beat in the egg yolks one at a time, then fold in the flour, salt and the ground almonds and mix quickly together to form a dough.

Shape into a round, wrap in cling film and put in fridge for ‘2 hours’ before use.

This pastry is perfect for Bakewell Tart.

Coconut Pastry:

  • 2 egg yolks
  • Seeds of vanilla pod (or 2 tsp of vanilla extract)
  • 100g (3.5oz) caster sugar
  • 100g (3.5oz) butter, softened
  • 165g (5.5oz) plain flour
  • 60g (2.5oz) unsweetened, desiccated coconut
  • Pinch of salt

Cream together the egg yolks, vanilla, sugar and butter in a large bowl, until light and fluffy. Fold in the flour, coconut and salt and mix together until the dough forms large chunks. Using your hands, bring the mixture together. Remove from the bowl and gently knead for 10 seconds on a lightly floured surface. Wrap in cling film and put in the fridge to rest for 30 minutes.

Roll the pastry out on a lightly floured board and use as required.

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About HonieMummy (HonieBuk)

Mum of two girls (16 & 9) and step-Mum to one boy (15). All of whom are bright, fun-loving, creative and musical and make me proud and despite his disability (CP) my step-son and family face challenges with a smile and the will to succeed. Love to travel (mainly US/Canada/Scotland), passionate about photography, music is a must, always in HoniesKitchen, love a bit of crafting and I'm learning to knit (maybe even crochet). I'm a networking junkie and of course there has to be time (quality time) with my amazing family! I like to Blog infrequently whenever it takes my fancy and I don't mind sharing my ups and downs, advice and querky ideas with you all. I will mostly post recipes and photos of food, family and travel. I love to review products that my family and me would use - I kinda consider it my 'duty' to let you all know if something is as good as it says on the tin and a 'must buy' product, that all families should know about. Find these in HonieLikes. If you like what you see, please tell me - I work hard at these things :o)
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One Response to Shortcrust Pastry (Sweet, Savoury, Lemon and Almond, Coconut)

  1. Boab says:

    I was looking for a short crust pastry recipe and found it here. Just the job. Many thanks.

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