Old Fashioned Puff Paste


1/2  pound of butter
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 pound of flour
1/4 to 1/2 cup of ice-water


  • Cut off one-third of the butter and put the remaining two-thirds in a bowl of ice-water. Divide this into four equal parts; pat each into a thin sheet and set them away on ice.
  • Mix and sift flour and salt. Rub the reserved butter into it and make as stiff as possible with ice-water. Dust the slab with flour; turn the paste upon it; knead for one minute, then stand it on ice for five minutes.
  • Roll the cold paste into a square sheet about one-third of an inch thick; place the cold batter in the centre and fold the paste over it, first from the sides and then the ends, keeping the shape square and folding so that the butter is completely covered and cannot escape through any cracks as it is rolled.
  • Roll out to 1/4-inch thickness, keeping the square shape and folding as before, but without butter. Continue rolling and folding, enclosing a sheet of butter at every alternate folding until all four sheets are used.
  • Then turn the folded side down and roll in one direction into a long narrow strip, keeping the edges as straight as possible.
  • Fold the paste over, making three even layers. Then roll again
    and fold as before. Repeat the process until the dough has had six turns. Cut into the desired shapes and refrigerate for at least thirty minutes or longer before putting in the oven.
  • If during the making the paste sticks to the board or pin, remove it immediately and stand it on the ice until thoroughly chilled.
  • Scrape the board clean; rub with a dry cloth and dust with fresh flour before trying again. Use as little flour as possible in rolling, but use enough to keep the paste dry.
  • Roll with a light, even, long stroke in every direction, but never work the rolling-pin back and forth as that movement toughens the paste and breaks the bubbles of air.

TIP: To make good puff paste you must have all the ingredients cold. Puff paste should be made in a cool place as it is necessary to keep the paste cold during the whole time of preparation. Avoid making the paste on a warm, damp day.

This recipe makes two pies or four crusts.

The baking of puff paste is almost as important as the rolling.The oven must be very hot, with the greatest heat at the bottom, so that the paste will rise before it browns. If the paste should begin to scorch, lover the temperature.

TIP: If you need quick cooling; place a pan of
cold water in the oven.

Real Cooking

Did You Know?
To be most palatable, pies and pastry should be served as soon as possible after they are baked. When pies are allowed to stand for any length of time, the lower crust becomes soaked with moisture from the filling used, and in this state the pie is not only unpalatable, but to a certain extent indigestible. Consequently, whenever it is possible, only enough for one meal should be baked at a time.

After a pie is taken from the oven, it should not be removed from the pan in which it is baked until it is served. In fact, pie with a tender crust cannot be handled easily and so should be cut while it is still in the pan.

Often it is best to serve a pie warm. When this is to be done, it can be served immediately upon being taken from the oven, or if it has been baked for some time and is cold, it may be set in the oven and reheated before serving. Such treatment will freshen any pie that has become more or less stale. In case pies must be kept before being served, they should be covered and stored in a place that is both cold and dry.

Where any recipe calls for baking powder, and you do not have it, you can use cream of tartar and soda, in the proportion of one level teaspoonful of soda to two of cream of tartar.

When a cake is thoroughly baked it shrinks from the sides of the pan. A light touch with the finger which leaves no mark is another indication that the cake is baked.