Our pâte brisée--butter, salt, and a little water to bring it all together--is as traditional as a crust gets. Sebastien likes to add a bit of milk and egg to many of his doughs, for richness and binding power, but this pâte brisée reflects my enduring respect for classical technique. It's something every cook should master--it's so easy and so versatile. Pâte brisée is used for savory tarts, such as quiches, and for very sweet tarts.
All-purpose flour: 140 grams/1 cup 165 grams/1 cup + 3 tablespoons
Kosher salt: 3 grams/1 teaspoon
Cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch cubes: 227 grams/8 ounces
Ice water: 58 grams/1/4 cup
1. Place the 140 grams/1 cup flour and the salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and mix to combine. With the mixer running on low speed, add the butter a small handful at a time. When all the butter has been added, increase the speed to medium-low and mix for about 1 minute, until the butter is thoroughly blended. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl. Turn the speed to medium-low, add the remaining 165 grams/1 cup plus 3 tablespoons flour, and mix just to combine. Add the water and mix until incorporated. The dough will come up around the paddle and should feel smooth, not sticky, to the touch.
2. Remove the dough from the mixer and check to be certain that there are no visible pieces of butter remaining; if necessary, return the dough to the mixer and mix again briefly.
3. Pat the dough into a 7- to 8-inch disk and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour, but preferably overnight. (The dough can be refrigerated for up to 1 day or frozen for up to 1 month.)
[More from Bouchon Bakery: The Butter Continuum and Rolling Out Tart Dough and Blind-Baking Tart Shells]
Excerpted from Bouchon Bakery by Thomas Keller & Sebastien Rouxel (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2012. Photographs by Deborah Jones.
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