BUTTER PASTRY DOUGH
adapted from a recipe May 1995 issue of Gourmet
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into bits
6 to 7 tablespoons ice water
In a large bowl whisk together flour and salt and with a pastry blender or fingertips blend in butter until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with a fork to incorporate, until mixture begins to form a dough. I usually end up using 6 Tablespoons. In the bowl, smear dough in 3 or 4 forward motions with heel of hand to slightly develop gluten in flour and make dough easier to work with. Form dough into a ball and flatten to form a disk. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill 1 hour. Pastry dough may be made 1 week ahead and chilled.
When ready to bake your tart:
On a lightly floured surface with a floured rolling pin roll dough into a 12-inch to 14-inch round (about 1/8 inch thick). Fold round in half and transfer to a 10-inch or 12-inch tart pan with a removable fluted rim or a 10-inch or 12-inch quiche dish. Unfold dough, easing to fit, fold overhang toward center and press against side of pan or dish
Makes enough dough for a single-crust 10 or 12-inch tart.