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How to make shortcrust pastry

Master our easy-to-follow shortcrust pastry recipe and you'll have the base for buttery, golden quiches, pies and tarts. This recipe makes enough to line a 23cm tart tin, but when you're confident with the recipe you can use it to line other bakes. Don't forget to grab the ingredients list at the bottom of the page so you have everything you need.

  1. Rub together

    Put 175g plain flour in a large mixing bowl with 100g cold, cubed butter and a pinch of salt. With your fingertips, rub the butter into the flour until it resembles fine breadcrumbs.

    Rub together
  2. Add water

    Mix in 3 tbsp cold water using a round-bladed knife, until the dough starts to clump together. Gather into a ball, then knead gently 4-5 times, being careful not to over-work it.

    Add water
  3. Roll

    Lightly dust the work surface and a rolling pin with plain flour. Carefully roll out the pastry, until it is about 3-4cm larger in diameter than a 23cm (9in) round x 2.5cm deep (1in) fluted tart tin.

  4. Line the tin

    Drape the pastry over the rolling pin to help you lift it, then unroll it over the tin, overlapping the edges. Gently lift and press the pastry so that it fits into the bottom of the tin, using your fingertips to carefully push the pastry into the fluted edges.

    Line the tin
  5. Remove excess

    Roll the rolling pin over the top edges of the tin to trim off the excess pastry – it should cut away from the tin as it is pressed. Press the pastry into the flutes again, so it sits slightly proud of the top (it will shrink slightly when baked). If there are any cracks or holes in the pastry, use the excess to lightly patch these, pressing in gently to seal. Prick the pastry base all over with a fork then transfer to the fridge to chill for 20-30 mins.

    Remove excess
  6. Blind bake

    Blind baking ensures that the pastry will be crisp and golden as it is part-cooked before any filling is added.

    Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C. Line the pastry case with foil (or nonstick baking paper) and fill with baking beans (or dried beans or pulses). Bake for 12-15 mins until set. Remove the foil and beans and bake for a further 10-12 mins until pale golden. Your pastry case is now ready to be filled.

    pastry stage 6 (h)

    Calories 232 (12%), sugar 0.6g (1%), fat 14.3g (20%), saturates 8.3g (42%), salt 0.2g (3%), based on 6 servings.

  7. Ingredients

    We've prepared a simple shopping list so you can easily get all you need to make this handy pastry. Be sure to note down the ingredients or take a screenshot before heading to the shops.

    175g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
    100g butter, cold and cubed
    pinch of salt
    3 tbsp cold water
    baking beans or dried beans, for blind baking