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Traditional British Recipe - Short crust pastry

Short crust pastry is the most popular pastry in Britain. You need it to make many pies, tarts and pasties, so here's the recipe for 3 different weights of pastry:-

Ingredients (for 4oz / ¼lb pastry)

4 oz plain flour
1 oz lard
1 oz butter
1 tbsp cold water
small pinch of salt

Ingredients (for 6oz pastry)

6 oz plain flour
1½ oz lard
1½ oz butter
1½ tbsp cold water
large pinch of salt

Ingredients (for 8oz / ½lb pastry)

8 oz plain flour
2 oz lard
2 oz butter
2 tbsp cold water
large pinch of salt


  1. Chill the pastry dough in a fridge for 1 hour before use.
  2. Cut the butter and lard into the dry ingredients.
  3. Rub the fat in with your fingertips, till crumbs form.
  4. Sprinkle in the cold water and stir the mixture with a knife to form a dough.
  5. Knead the dough with your fingertips until it's smooth.


To rub in: A method of incorporating fat into flour by rubbing the fat with the fingertips until it combines with the flour to form a mixture with a breadcrumb-like consistency, eg rub the butter into the flour and add enough cold water to form a smooth dough. Pastry, scones, cakes and biscuits are made using the rub in method.

To sift: To put dry ingredients such as flour or sugar through a sifter or mesh screen to loosen particles and incorporate air.

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