STEP ONEPULSE flour and salt in processor bowl fitted with steel blade several times.
STEP TWOCUT chilled shortening into ½-inch cubes. Scatter chilled cubes over flour mixture. Pulse in 1-second bursts, about 5-7 times for a single crust, 7-9 times for a double crust or just until mixture resembles coarse crumbs with some pea-sized pieces remaining.
STEP THREEREMOVE lid. Sprinkle half the maximum recommended amount of ice cold water over the flour mixture. (Never pour water through food processor lid.) Pulse in 1-second bursts, 10-12 times or until mixture is evenly moistened.
TipTest dough for proper moistness by squeezing a marble-sized ball of dough in your hand. If it holds together firmly, do not add any additional water. If the dough crumbles, add more water by the tablespoonful, until dough is moist enough to form a smooth ball when pressed together.
STEP FOURSHAPE dough into a ball for single pie crust. Divide dough in two for double crust or double deep dish crust, one ball slightly larger than the other. Flatten ball(s) into 1/2-inch thick round disk.
TipFor ease in rolling, wrap dough in plastic wrap. Chill for 30 minutes or up to 2 days.
STEP FIVEROLL dough (larger ball of dough for double crust pie) from center outward with steady pressure on a lightly floured work surface (or between two sheets of wax or parchment paper) into a circle 2-inches wider than pie plate for the bottom crust. Transfer dough to pie plate by loosely rolling around rolling pin. Center the rolling pin over the pie plate, and then unroll, easing dough into pie plate.
STEP SIXFor a SINGLE pie crust, trim edges of dough leaving a 3/4-inch overhang. Fold edge under. Flute dough as desired. Bake according to specific recipe directions.
STEP SEVENFor a DOUBLE pie crust, roll larger disk for bottom crust, trimming edges of dough even with outer edge of pie plate. Fill unbaked pie crust according to recipe directions. Roll out smaller dough disk. Transfer dough carefully onto filled pie. Trim edges of dough leaving a 3/4-inch overhang. Fold top edge under bottom crust. Press edges together to seal and flute as desired. Cut slits in top crust or prick with fork to vent steam. Bake according to specific recipe directions.
Two Methods for Pre-baking Pie Crusts (Cream Pies)
STEP ONEPre-baking without weights: Thoroughly prick bottom and sides of unbaked pie dough with fork (50 times) to prevent it from blistering or rising. Bake crust in lower third of oven, at 425°F, 16-20 minutes or until edges and bottom are golden brown.
STEP TWOPre-baking with weights: Thoroughly prick bottom and sides of unbaked pie dough with fork (50 times) to prevent it from blistering or rising. Chill or freeze for 30 minutes. Line pie dough snugly with foil or parchment paper. Fill with dried beans or pie weights. Bake at 375°F for 20 minutes. Remove foil and weights. Reduce oven to 350°F. Bake 5-10 minutes or until edges and bottom are golden brown.