Hot water crust pastry is a thicker, sturdier pastry perfect for heavy fillings to make things like pork pies. Step-by-step photso teach you how to make this pastry recipe.
I use this hot water crust pastry for making meat pies. This style of pastry is sturdier and helps hold the heavy meat, a traditional flaky pastry pie crust would be too weak flimsy.
I know, I know you are thinking this goes against all other pie crust recipes with their ice-cold ingredients! Trust me, this works and it creates absolutely delicious tasting pastry.
My mom and aunties have always made hot water crust pastry with only lard, these days some people use a combination of equal parts butter lard. Feel free to switch it up if you prefer.
Let's get to the recipe
The ingredient list is small for this pastry.
- Lard. Lard is a white mixture made from rendering the fatty tissues of a pig. It helps create the most melt in your mouth pastry.
- Milk. I generally keep whole milk on hand but we have also used 2% milk for this with no issues.
- Water. Just tap water is fine since we will be cooking with the milk and lard.
- Flour. You just need regular All-Purpose Flour/ Plain Flour for this recipe, some recipes call for bread flour but I personally have never had any issues with just good old all-purpose.
- Salt. Don't skip it, we want the pastry to be tasty and flavorful so the salt is key!
You'll also need an egg when you go to bake the pastry. A good egg washing ensures the crust is golden brown and shiny!
We are going to start by warming the liquid ingredients .
In a large pot over medium heat warm add the lard, milk, and water then cook over medium heat until the mixture comes to a boil.
While the liquid is warming in a large bowl whisk together the flour and salt and get a wooden spoon ready.
When the liquid has boiled immediately add ¾ of it to the flour and carefully mix with the wooden spoon. At first the pastry will seem dry and crumbly but it will start to come together.
You may need to add more liquid or you may not, each batch is different. I added about ½ of the remaining liquid and my pastry came together beautifully, somedays I need to add all of it, each batch is different! Get your hands in there! But you can see the sides of the bowl go clean and everything just comes together when there is the right amount of liquid.
If your pastry is too dry and crumbly add 1 tablespoon of hot water at a time until a smooth dough is formed.
Now you'll want to knead the dough for a minute or two to achieve a really smooth cohesive dough. Use the heel of your hand to push your body weight into the dough and stretch the dough over itself and repeat.
Now follow the instructions for the recipe you are using. I will show you how I roll and cut the dough for my mini pork pies.
Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of just about ⅛- ¼ of an inch, this is thicker than your average pie crust.
Take the baking vessel or pie plates you are using and gently measure and score the pastry as to how much you will need to fill the bottom and sides of the pan. For a standard cupcake size pan, I use a 4-inch round circle, my coffee mug is a perfect size.
Since hot water crust pastry is strong and pliable it is perfect for free-standing hand-raised pies.
Generously butter the baking pan then quickly and gently transfer the pastry into the buttered baking pan. I find buttering the baking pan helps the outside crust have a really rich, shiny, golden buttery exterior.
Gently press the pastry into the corners and up the sides with a little overhang so when you put the pastry lid on you can seal the two together to create a crust.
If you have any tears in the pastry inside the baking pan take an extra piece of pastry to do some patch work, this helps ensure no filling oozes out.
Work quickly you don't want the bottom pastry to lose its warmth because it will be harder to seal the top pastry to the bottom pastry. When adding the top crust of the pie lightly brush the back of the pastry with water this will help encourage it to seal to the bottom pastry better.
Use your fingers to bring the bottom and top pastries together to create a thick seal than either flute it or use a fork to press it together. Then make sure you give the top of the pastry a generous brush of egg wash to ensure the golden shine once baked.
Bake according to whatever recipe you are following, or until you reach a beautiful golden brown color.
Can you double
You can definitely double but I would not recommend any more as you want this pastry to stay warm while you work with it.
Recipes to use hot water crust pastry in
You can't have a pork pie without this pastry. We love pork pies especially at Christmas time
I can't wait to try this Chicken and Leek Pie one day, looks fab!
This traditional Game Pie looks absolutely incredible.
★★★★★ Please let me know if you make this recipe by leaving a star rating and comment below!
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Hot Water Crust Pastry
Hot water crust pastry is a thicker, sturdier pastry perfect for heavy fillings to make things like pork pies. Step-by-step photos teach you how to make this pastry recipe.
- Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
- Yield: 1-9 Inch Pie Crust or 6 Muffin Size Pies 1x
- 3oz Lard
- 3.5oz Milk
- 3.5oz Water
- 12oz (352 Grams) All-Purpose Flour/ Plain Flour
- ½ Teaspoon Salt
You'll also need an egg + water to create an egg wash to brush on top of the pastry before baking
- In a large pot over medium heat warm the lard, milk, and water. Cook over medium heat until the mixture comes to a boil.
- While the liquid is warming in a large bowl whisk together the flour and salt and get a wooden spoon ready.
- When the liquid has boiled immediately add ¾s of it to the flour and carefully mix with the wooden spoon, be careful as the mixture will be hot. You may need to add more liquid or you may not, each batch is different. Keep mixing the pastry will look dry and crumbly at first but it will come together, you may need to add a tablespoon of liquid at a time for the dough to properly come together. Once the mixture is mostly combined you should be able to use your hand without burning it and knead the dough to ensure it is evenly combined and you have a smooth dough, knead for a minute or two.
- Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface to a thickness of just about ⅛- ¼ of an inch, this is thicker than your average pie crust.
- Take the baking vessel you are using and gently measure and score the pastry as to how much you will need to fill the bottom and sides of the pan. For a standard cupcake size pan, I use a 4-inch round circle, my coffee mug is a perfect size. Generously butter the baking pan then quickly and gently transfer the pastry into the buttered baking pan. Gently press the pastry into the corners and up the sides with a little overhang so when you put the pastry lid on you can seal the two together to create a crust. Use the same concept for a loaf pan or springform pan.
- Bake according to the recipe instructions. For the muffin size, I bake them for 40 minutes inside the tin then gently remove and cook for an additional 20 minutes free standing on a sheet tray.
- Prep Time: 15
- Cook Time: 60
- Category: Dinner, Appetizer
- Method: Bake
- Cuisine: British
Keywords: how to make hot water crust pastry, hot water crust pie, hot water crust pastry recipe
My mom is English, and I surprised her with this for Christmas! I am shocked at how good it came out, we will make it for every Christmas.
Elizabeth Waterson says
Eric this is awesome! So happy to hear this! Thank you for th review! Take care. XX Liz