How to blind bake

Pastry cases are often baked ‘blind' before filling. This prevents the pastry from rising in the tin, and also helps crisp the pastry case preventing a soggy crust.

  • Roll out the pastry and check that it is the required size against the loose-bottomed flan ring that you'll need to bake the case.
  • Use a rolling pin to drape the pastry into the flan ring or baking dish and then press gently into place. Trim edges as advised in the recipe or using a sharp knife.
  • Cut a piece of greaseproof paper a little larger than the flan ring or dish and place on top of the pastry. Fill with ceramic baking beans or dried beans such as red kidney beans. This will help to keep the pastry flat, and they will also get hot helping to cook the pastry. Bake according to the recipe - usually in a hot oven gas 7, 220°C, fan200°C for 10 minutes.
  • Remove the paper and baking beans and return the pastry case to the oven for a further 5 minutes to continue cooking, then follow your chosen recipe for the filling.
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