What Is Blind Baking and How to Blind Bake?
What Is Blind Baking?
Blind baking is a term used by bakers referring specifically to pie crusts and pastry shells. It is also called cooking empty or baking empty.
Blind baking is when a chef bakes a pie crust or pastry shell with no filling added. The pie crust may be either completely baked, or only partially baked, according to the recipe.
Why Blind Bake a Pie Crust?
The reason a baker bakes a pie crust first is because if a dough crust has certain fillings added and both of them are baked together, the crust will have a difficult time baking correctly. It will be soggy and doughy on the bottom. Also, because some fillings get done much quicker than the pie crust itself, or they can curdle. Blind baking is used for pie fillings that don't require cooking, too. Quiches are often prepared this way also.
There are a few steps to follow for learning how to blind bake. Here they are
How to Blind Bake a Pie Crust Step by Step
First, make your pie crust dough. Follow your favorite recipe.
Then, place the crust in a pie dish. Put it in the refrigerator for about half an hour.
Take the chilled pie dough crust out of the refrigerator. Line it with aluminum foil. You can also use parchment paper. This keeps the weights mentioned below from cooking into the crust.
Weight the pie crust down. There are many items you may use to accomplish this- marbles, dried beans, raw rice, or specially made pie weights. This helps prevent the pie crust from puffing and to keep the sides from collapsing.
Prick the sides and bottom of the pie crust in several places with a fork, too. This will keep the pie crust from forming bubbles and blisters while it bakes. Don't do this if you aren't blind baking a pie crust, but instead baking it with filling added. If you do, the filling will leak out onto the bottom of the pie pan, creating a mess.
Okay, now put the weighted pie crust into a 350 degrees Fahrenheit preheated oven. Watch it carefully. When the edges just start to turn golden, remove the pie crust.
Now remove the pie weights and parchment paper. Put it back into the oven and bake til the pie crust is done, about 5 minutes.
It will be done when it's a light golden brown color. If the edges start to get too brown before the rest of the pie crust is done, cover the edges only with a specially made pie crust shield. Or wrap pieces of aluminum foil around the edges to cover them.