NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 08:  Ina Garten attends the 10th Annual New York Times Arts & Leisure Weekend photocall at the Times Center on January 8, 2011 in New York City.  (Photo by Taylor Hill/FilmMagic)
Food - Drink
The Reason Ina Garten Doesn't Only Use Butter In Her Pie Crust
Creating a homemade pie crust is a true labor of love that most home cooks save for special occasions, and it comes with a bit of pressure, since the crust can really make or break any kind of pie. Most crust recipes call for just butter as the fat, chef Ina Garten uses butter along with another ingredient to ensure a flaky crust.
Garten uses both butter and shortening to create her pie crust, explaining that the combination of the two makes for a beautiful and flaky texture. The butter is what gives the crust its flaky quality and rich buttery taste, but the shortening helps your crust retain its shape and texture in your pie dish, making for a slightly more foolproof recipe.
This duo's superpower is tied to their unique melting points: butter has a lower melting point, while shortening is a bit higher. The heat from your hands can melt the butter in pie dough, ruining the texture, but shortening adds extra insurance and stability; still, Garten reminds us to keep both kinds of fat very cold prior to using.