Baking blind crusts

Discussion in 'Pastries & Baking' started by alexia, Jun 3, 2002.

  1. alexia

    alexia

    Messages:
    489
    Likes Received:
    10
    I'm curious how others do this. What materials do you use to weight the crust? Does anyone do it using just a length of light chain? How do people making multiples weight theirs. Surely you don't keep buckets of beans hanging around all the time.

    I seem to recall reading somewhere that one needn't weight the shell. Anyone with thoughts on that?
     
  2. thebighat

    thebighat

    Messages:
    799
    Likes Received:
    11
    I use 10 inch pyrex pans, with two pieces of that pullout foil crisscrossed and filled with beans and then the edges of the foil are rolled down. That goes into the pie pan and then I set a 10 inch foil pan on that to keep the crust edge up. Works every time. I truly don't think I overwork my pie dough, but without support it shrinks. I don't mind if it bubbles, but no shrinking allowed.
     
  3. mudbug

    mudbug

    Messages:
    2,068
    Likes Received:
    12
    Exp:
    Culinary Instructor
    beans
    rice
    ramekins
    specialty pie weights (metal or ceramic)

    'Without the weight of a filling, a pastry shell set into a hot oven can shrink dramatically, fill with air pockets, and puff up resulting in a shrunken uneven shell that can hold only part of the filling it should. Metal pie weights outperform rice and beans because they are heavier, and thereby better able to keep the shell from puffing, and because, being made of metal, they are better conductors of heat. The better heat conduction promotes a more even browning of the pastry. which is also why lining with aluminum foil is preferred rather than parchment or waxed paper.'
     
  4. w.debord

    w.debord

    Messages:
    1,640
    Likes Received:
    11
    I'm sort of ditto thebighat. I use foil to line, beans and if handy another pie tin to hold sides up. I keep my beans in the foil used to line, then stack into a bucket. Their pretty quick to reuse this way.

    With-out support as bighat mentions, the sides do shrink.

    I also don't set the shells on trays in convection, I want as much heat as possible to hit the bottom of the crust to set. Set them on the bottom couple racks.
     
  5. momoreg

    momoreg

    Messages:
    2,938
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    Professional Pastry Chef
    I think most bakers would say that yes, they do have buckets of either beans or rice specifically for this purpose. I use beans, with a circle of parchment under it, and like Wendy, I just stack it in the bucket that way, so it's easy to use the next time. BUt the beans do start to stink after awhile, so you have to replace them after 15 or 20 uses.
     
  6. cape chef

    cape chef

    Messages:
    4,508
    Likes Received:
    32
    Exp:
    Professional Chef
    We also use beans to weight down the dough, pushed against the sides to hold up the crimps..and after a month or two..i make a toasted bean soup with escorole and chorizo:D
     
  7. alexia

    alexia

    Messages:
    489
    Likes Received:
    10
    Well, the good news is that I do it the same way the pros do. The bad news is the pros don't have a better way. I was hoping those little chains worked. They'd take up less room, be easier to handle, etc.

    For tarts, do you prefer using those fluted pans with removable bottoms, or do you use the bottomless rings?
     
  8. cape chef

    cape chef

    Messages:
    4,508
    Likes Received:
    32
    Exp:
    Professional Chef
    I use rectangle fluted false bottom pan's for buffets and round ones for plated desserts...

    Are you talking about the round cheese cake pan's
     
  9. alexia

    alexia

    Messages:
    489
    Likes Received:
    10
    Cape Chef, I meant those rings that are about 1/2" high, have no bottoms. Are they used at all commercially here?
     
  10. pjm333

    pjm333

    Messages:
    173
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    Professional Pastry Chef
    another good item to use when lining a raw shell is coffee filters..They dont brown and last a very long time...I work in a hotel and the one they use there are huge. I trim them and they fit great into 8"to 10: tart rings..

    pat
     
  11. w.debord

    w.debord

    Messages:
    1,640
    Likes Received:
    11
    I've never used (but also never worked where they owned those either) the bottomless tart forms. The advantages of not having to sort pans looking for the right bottoms and avoiding all the times the dish washer acidentally throws them out is worth learning how to handle the forms with-out bottoms.

    But for me I freeze any extra dough in the forms and then wrap individually in the freezer (to take up less room) the ones with the bottoms make better sense. But I do get frustrated sorting thru them when I'm super busy...when you can't find the bottoms......
     
  12. angrychef

    angrychef

    Messages:
    415
    Likes Received:
    10
    We don't weigh down our shortdough(we just prickle it with a fork), but do our piedough. I use ice-cream salt and line the dough with foil. We used to use beans and I really hate the smell after it's been used several times. The salt works great, doesn't stink and we reuse the foil several times.
     
  13. m brown

    m brown

    Messages:
    1,839
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    Professional Pastry Chef
    :confused:
    how about using chains? metal chains from the hardware store? wash them then reuse to blind bake using parchment or foil or coffee filters, and you won't get bean stink or salt spills into your crust. you can get all kinds of sizes and lenghts too........

    besides, they won't spill out all over and you can wear them for your next biker meet!;)
     
  14. kimmie

    kimmie

    Messages:
    2,550
    Likes Received:
    12
    I also use beans, ramekins and ceramic pie weights!

    But the beans are cheap and you can stock up for that purpose without breaking the bank...

    I like your idea of chains mbrown. Ever tried?
     
  15. suzanne

    suzanne

    Messages:
    3,853
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    Food Editor
    I thought Alexia meant the "pie chains" you sometimes see in catalogues or stores. They look like bead necklaces that have come apart, and you coil them around on the crust. I've never used them, though. But the suggestion of real chains should work -- and could be cheaper (always a plus!).

    Where I've worked, they always used tart rings. Maybe because the chefs prefered the straight sides? Or didn't want to have to deal with the extra insulation of the removable bottom? The only problem I ever had with rings was keeping the different sizes sorted.
     
  16. alexia

    alexia

    Messages:
    489
    Likes Received:
    10
    Susanne, I did mean the "pie chains" or some hardware store substitute. Seems to me IF they worked as well as the beans, etc., they'd be easier to store. I thought they also might make a nice evenly baked bottom crust easier. I had hoped someone had tried them and I could get some feedback on them. (I hate to buy equipment that won't work - even a dumb little chain - as I never throw these things out.)

    I have a couple of the tart rings that I don't use as often any more. First because I then have to find room in the fridge for a tray as well as the tart pan (I like to refrigerate the formed crust before I bake it). And second because I am often taking the finished tart out with me and it travels easier in the other pan. But I do prefer the look of the tart made with just the ring.

    Actually, with some fruit and vegetable pies that won't be too runny, I often make them without anything, forming a raised edge freehand, then baking on the pizza stone. They're actually rather pretty that way and you can make other shapes than round ones.

    Thanks to everyone for their input.
     
  17. marmalady

    marmalady

    Messages:
    1,046
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    Professional Caterer
    I've always used the bean and foil method, and I push the beans up the sides of the crust to keep it from melting down. I've always wondered about the 'chains', because they would only weight down the bottom of the crust, and not the sides.
     
  18. panini

    panini

    Messages:
    5,159
    Likes Received:
    277
    Exp:
    Owner/Operator
    I must be honest, I have not read the whole thread but I just wanted to add that I feel that the less heat on the inside portion of the crust the better to cook and set additional product. The beans which we use, I'm pretty sure don't conduct as much heat as the metal would. I think the chains would quicken browning and cooking of the inner surface of you product. Just my thoughts. Press garbage can if you dissagree, no problem.
    Jeff
     
  19. cj

    cj

    Messages:
    36
    Likes Received:
    10
    I go beanless. I have some metal pie tins which stack one inside the other, plus disposable aluminum tins to sell whole pies, which also stack. I lay the crust in one as usual, place a duplicate tin on top, and turn them upside down to bake. Gravity is my friend - the crust doesn't slide down into itself, and the 'stacker' keeps it even all around the sides & bottom. A parchment circle between the spare tin and the crust bottom makes them easier to separate, but it's not necessary.
     
  20. marmalady

    marmalady

    Messages:
    1,046
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    Professional Caterer
    Panini - Not garbage at all! I guess what I was wondering how the chains give support to the sides of the crust while baking, to prevent the sides from slipping.

    CJ - UPSIDE DOWN!!!!! HOW COOL!:bounce: :bounce: I may have to try that!