Even some of the best pastry chefs admit that producing great piecrust can be a challenge.
Lucky for would-be bakers, a few of the Bay Area's finest purveyors have come to the rolling-pin rescue. Each is providing pastry dough to take home and stuff with your favorite fillings. As always, it's a wise idea to call ahead about availability. You didn't make it, but we'll never tell.
Prather Ranch This meat market in the Ferry Building sells dough made with its own house-rendered lard. One pound ($9) produces a double-crust pie. For larger projects, there's a handy guide on site to help determine appropriate amounts.
Bi-Rite Market This Mission stalwart offers two butter piecrusts for $4, each of which is pressed into a tin for streamlined baking.
Mayfield Bakery In Palo Alto, this local favorite makes bottom-crust dough for $5 and will also press it into a pie tin for $10. Call to special-order.
Downtown Bakery & Creamery Healdsburg's legendary bakery sells unshaped dough for $4.50. Ready-to-bake, aka already shaped, it's $6.50 for an 8-inch pie and $8 for a 10-inch one.
The Pasta Shop in Market Hall The go-to Oakland larder stocks single-shell butter piecrusts, two shells to a package for $6.