Friday, 1 March 2013

Basic Sweet Pastry

sweet pastry

This basic sweet pastry mix can be used for all manner of sweet pastry products like apple pie to Bakewell tart or empire biscuits to individual sweet pastry cases, its versatile and reliable. For a richer paste use butter and add one third smooth semolina or rice flour to give it that added crunch, much like a traditional Scottish shortbread.

250g Plain or winter flour
125g Cake margarine (Use butter if you want a richer buttery flavour)
60g Fine caster sugar (You can use icing sugar if you want a crisper crumbly bite)
20-30ml cold water (only add enough to get the sugar into a smooth paste)
egg yellow colour

sweet pastry

Step 1
Put your sugar into a bowl and add just enough water to dissolve the sugar, you want as dry a paste as you can get, then add a drop of egg yellow colour. Leave to dissolve then move on to the next stage…

Step 2
Add flour and chopped margarine into mixing bowl, mix with dough hook until it starts coming together. You can now add your dissolved sugar to the mix, continue to mix on a low speed until the sweet paste starts to come away from the sides of the mixing bowl, finish off by hand.

Step 3
Knead the sweet paste together until you have a firm dough, sprinkle with flour to make the task easier. If the pastry is too soft then wrap with cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Do not overwork the sweet paste, flour your work area and flatten sweet paste with your hand, begin to roll out with a rolling pin. You have to use a degree of care when handling this sweet paste, so don't be too heavy handed, you need light fingers.

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