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Puff Pastry of Suet Pie Crust from 1887 –

Puff Pastry of Suet Pie Crust from 1887

Posted by Warren

Pie recipe tips and help. Text version is below image.

White House Cook Book, by Fanny Lemira Gillette, 1887


suet puff pastry pie-crust 1887

Flaky crust is a wonderful pastry. If you spent a lot of time and energy, then it makes sense to finish it off with a wonderful crust.

Obviously this is not the crust for everyday pies.

When this makes the crust looks like puff pastry but with fewer layers.

Puff Pastry of Suet Pie Crust from 1887

White House Cook Book, by Fanny Lemira Gillette, 1887



Pastry Ingredients

Two cupfuls of flour, one-half teaspoonful of salt, one teaspoonful of baking-powder, one cup of chopped suet, freed of skin, and chopped very fine, one cupful of water. Place the flour, sifted with the powder, in a bowl, add suet and water; mix into smooth, rather firm dough.


Flaky Pastry

This paste is excellent for fruit puddings, and dumplings that are boiled; if it is well made, it will be light and flaky, and the suet imperceptible. It is also excellent for meat pies, baked or boiled.


Keep it Cold

All the ingredients should be very cold when mixing, and the suet dredged with flour after it is chopped, to prevent the particles from adhering to each other.

A Cookbook with vintage pie recipes


This is one of America’s most enduring cookbooks. It was in print, under varying names and guises, for fifty some years and has been reprinted, in full or in part, throughout the 20th century. Early editions were printed on poor quality paper and so have not survived in easily usable form which makes them rare to find.

This the White House Cookbook the first edition.

It had a frontispiece photograph of the wife’s of the President of the United States. This practice continued for much of the publishing of the book.

The interesting fact is that this cookbook was and still is a very popular American cookbook and has been for more than a century.

This cookbook is quite comprehensive with many household hints and tips in addition to hundreds of recipes, some being for pies.

Pie Crust Recipe made with Lard and Butter

—Ingredients and instructions are not the actual vintage recipe but is provided for reference purposes.


Pastry dough – double crust

2 1/2 cups King Arthur all-purpose flour (Red bag)

2 tablespoons sugar

1/2 ice cold water (do not use all at once)

1 teaspoon cold canola oil

1/2 teaspoon fine salt

1/2 cup (8 tablespoons) cold leaf lard

1/2 cup (1 stick) cold unsalted butter (any brand wrapped in foil)



Directions making the dough

Need help making
a flaky pie crust?

1. Add all your dry ingredients to a chilled glass bowl and tossed the mixture with a fork.

2. Cube your fats into small pieces and add to the bowl.

3. Using just your finger tips rub the cold fat into the flour. Stop when the mixture resembles cracker crumbs and tiny peas.

4. Whip the ice cold water and oil until it looks cloudy and the mixture looks a little foamy. Quickly add two thirds of this to the dry ingredients and toss with a fork. If it is not coming together add the remaining liquid.


Do Not over work the dough.
It will make it tough.

5. The dough should look somewhat dry but come together when squeezed in your hands.

6. Now divide this mixture in half to make two balls by squeezing it all together. Compress and flatten the balls to form two large disks.

7. Wrap disks tightly with plastic wrap and chill for 30-60 minutes. You can freeze them for two months by adding a foil wrap to the covered disks.

8. Your dough is now ready for your favorite pie recipe.

Pie Crust Success

When rendering the fat make sure to clean off any meat or organs stuck on it. This will prevent funky odors and taste entering your suet.

This dough may be kept frozen for about a month.

Pie Recipes and much more…