I developed this gluten-free pie crust a while back after I had a client who requested pie after many years of deprivation. My standby gluten-free crust recipe contained brown rice flour, BUT she was unable to eat rice, so some improvisation ensued.
I ultimately chose to go with amaranth flour as the dominant flour in the crust, and liked it so much I’ve made the switch in my standby recipe.
This is a fairly versatile “short pastry” — omit the sugar, and it works well for savoury pies.
If you would like a slightly more easy to work with crust, make this up in the food processor. I have found that making it by hand with a pastry blender results in a flakier crust. Despite the fact that it is gluten-free, resist the urge to overwork this, as adding too much additional flour during rolling will make the final product tough.
Throughout the summer, I use this pastry to make seasonal fruit tarts (such as the one pictured). For approximately 10-12 small tarts, I merely use a filling of about 500 ml low sugar jam (my own, homemade), combined with chopped raw fruit, spooned into unbaked tart shells and baked at 425 degrees for about 25 minutes until bubbling. The tarts shown were low sugar strawberry jam combined with chopped rhubarb. The strawberry jam had been made quite loose in case I wanted to use it for sauce, so I stirred in 1.5 T tapioca starch into the jam before adding the rhubarb. The tapioca thickens and sets as it heats up. The only other trick is to place the baking sheet with the tart shells on the bottom rack so that the bottom of the tart crusts become nicely browned.
- 1 cup amaranth flour
- 1 cup tapioca starch
- 1 cup cornstarch (or potato starch)
- 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar (omit if making savoury crust)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder (optional)
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons xantham gum
- 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt
- 1 1/2 cups butter or shortening, cut in small pieces
- 1 egg (or 1/4 water if making eggless)
- 2 teaspoons cider vinegar
- Combine all the dry ingredients in a medium bowl and mix well. Cut in the butter or shortening with a pastry blender until the mixture resembles dry oatmeal. Combine the egg and vinegar, and add slowly to the mixture until the pastry is moistened.
- If making in the food processor, combine all dry ingredients and pulse to mix well. Add the butter or shortening, and pulse until the mixture resembles oatmeal. Add the liquid ingredients slowly, pulsing until the mixture comes together in a ball.
- Form into a ball and cover with plastic wrap Let it rest in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before rolling out.
- When rolling, dust the surface with amaranth flour. It is easiest to roll out on a silicone mat, or between two sheets of plastic wrap.
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is a personal chef who specializes in creating customized catering and baking for people with food sensitivities. A recipe developer and baker by day, by night, she enjoys delving into the history of classic cocktails and created a line of cocktail bitters
for no other reason than she wanted chocolate bitters in her Manhattans! In her spare time, she documents the antics and unbearable cuteness her two Shiba Inus over at Life in the Shiba Shack