Sweet Shortcrust Pastry
1 3/4 cups plain flour
1/4 cup icing sugar
125g cold unsalted butter, cubed
1 egg, lightly beaten
Place flour, icing sugar and butter in a food processor and process in short bursts until mixture has a fine crumb consistency. Add egg and process again, in short bursts until mixture starts to come together - it will still seem quite crumbly. Turn the mixture onto a floured work surface and press dough together. If you are making one large tart, bring dough together into a large, thick disc. If you are making a number of smaller tarts, divide mixture into 2 smaller discs. Either way, wrap pastry in glad wrap and place in the fridge for 30 minutes. Roll out dough on a sheet of glad wrap or baking paper (this stops it sticking to your surface), ease into the corners of your buttered dish and trim edges. I now put the pastry (in the dish/es) into the freezer for 20 minutes. This removes the need to blind bake with pie weights. The pastry doesn't puff up when you cook it from frozen - so much easier! From the freezer, put the pastry straight into a 180 degree oven and bake for about 15-20 minutes. You will notice that the pastry has 'dried out' and started to brown slightly. Perfection!
As much as it always seems easier to buy a pre-made pastry case, you will no longer wish to take this option once you make your own. It is infinitely better and so much more satisfying! You can make pastry that tastes and looks better than the frozen option. Now, don't just take my word for it...give it a go!