Basic Foolproof Lard Crust
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup lard or vegetable shortening
1 tablespoon vinegar
3 to 4 tablespoons ice water
In a medium-sized bowl, combine flour and salt. Using a pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in lard or shortening until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. In a small bowl, mix vinegar, egg and 3 tablespoons ice water.
Drizzle over flour mixture, tossing with a fork until dough holds together in a ball. Add more ice water, a tablespoon at a time, if necessary. Wrap and refrigerate 30 minutes before rolling out. Makes pastry for 1 (9-inch) double-crusted pie or 2 (9-inch) single-crusted pies.
To bake a single crust:
Preheat oven to 400F (205C).
On a lightly floured board, roll out half of pastry to fit a 9-inch pie pan. Carefully fit into pie pan. Line with foil or waxed paper; fill with pie weights. Use metal weights or uncooked dry beans.
Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until edge of crust is golden. Lift out foil or paper and return weights or beans to their container. (I have used the same beans for at least 20 years! I keep them in a jar, and they have darkened throughout the years, but are still fine to use for pie weights). If necessary, you may return crust to oven for a few minutes to finish browning center.