There are many techniques and methods to rolling out doughs, but the first task is to choose the style of rolling pin you prefer. One style is the American rolling pin which has a handle on either side and rotates on ball bearings. This rolling pin gives you more power, but since it has a straight edge on either side it will cut or indent your dough if you’re not careful. The other style of rolling pin is the French rolling pin, which doesn’t have handles because the ends are tapered. This style of rolling pin gives you more control over your product and allows you to use the full rolling pin without the fear of cutting your dough. In the Pastry Industry, Chef’s are just as picky about their rolling pins as they are about their recipes.
When your dough has rested and is ready to roll out, cut a small, manageable portion of dough, form it into a thick disk or hockey puck shape and place it on a floured surface. Dust your rolling pin with flour, place it in the center of your dough and begin rolling. You want to make sure that you start from the center and roll out to the edges, then rotate the dough 45 degrees and repeat. When your dough has reached the desired thickness, carefully fold it in half and place it in your pie dish. If the pie recipe you are using calls for the dough to be par-cooked, fill your dough with pie weights or dried beans and bake it in a 350 degree oven until the dough has puffed a little, but is still very tender. While the dough is in the oven, take a warm, damp rag and wipe off any excess dough or flour from your rolling pin. It is never a good idea to place your rolling pins in the dishwasher, so use a damp rag to wipe it off and if you notice that over time your rolling pin has dents or scratches, take a piece of fine grit sand paper and sand it down. You can use any food grade mineral oil to seal up your sanded rolling pin and keep it looking new for years.
Since Summer is rapidly approaching and berries will be in season, I’d like to share a blueberry pie filling recipe from my culinary course textbook On Cooking 5th Edition.
Yield: 4 lbs
1 each : 5 lbs Canned Blueberries
14 oz : Granulated Sugar
2.25 oz : Cornstarch
4 fl oz : Water
1/4 tsp : Ground Cinnamon
1 tbs : Lemon Juice
1/2 tbs : Lemon zest
Drain juices from blueberries and reserve both the fruit and the juice. Measure the juice and adjust with water to achieve 1pt. Bring liquid to a boil and add sugar, stirring until dissolved. Dissolve cornstarch in 4 fl oz of water and add to the liquid, return to a boil. Cook until the mixture thickens and clears. Remove from heat and add the cinnamon, lemon juice/zest and the reserved blueberries. Gently stir to coat the blueberries and allow to cool to room temperature. Then use to fill your precooked pie shell. Bake at 350 degrees until the center has set.
By: Helena Stallings, Culinary Arts Student