I always make my pastry in the Magimix, always have, always will. Why? Firstly it’s quick, and secondly I find rubbing fat into flour such a terrible bore, frankly I'd rather watch the paint dry on Tyson Fury's tattoos.
225g plain flour
140g salted butter
1 egg yolk with 3 tablespoons cold water.
That was the no-nonsense version, and now here’s my two-penn'orth' worth;
Mix the egg yolk with 3 tablespoons of cold water and pop it in the fridge for now.
Put the flour in the Magimix (with the knife blade) and pulse once to disperse any lumps. (These days it’s not necessary to sift flour, modern milling techniques have come on somewhat and the chances of finding a rat or any ‘impurities’ are rather slim. And no, we don’t want to introduce air!)
Add the butter and use the pulse button until you have fine bread crumbs. What does that mean? It means coarser than sand, you can still detect the butter separately from the flour, something the size of an unlit match head would be ideal.
Pour the egg water down the feeding tube and start to pulse (the machine, not you). Keep pulsing and before long the whole thing will start to come together and eventually start forming lumps, and then a ball, gathering more of itself with every revolution (like a snow ball rolling down a hill) and eventually leave the sides of the mixing bowl clean. (I’m overstating things, in reality the whole thing takes less than one or two minutes.)
Now, on a winter's day, if it’s the first thing I do before the ovens go on and whilst the temperature of the kitchen is cool, I go straight to rolling out, by-passing the 'resting' stage. However, if your ball of pastry feels soft don’t risk it. Pop it in the fridge for 15 mins to chill-out.
In the meantime, get everything in place, meaning clean and dry your work surface and sprinkle generously with flour, dust your rolling pin generously with flour too and find your tart case.
Now you can roll it. Preferably in a roughly circular shape (!), turning it 45 degrees every few rolls, but there’s no need to flip it over. Hang it over your rolling pin and drape it into the tin. Gently manipulate the base and sides to fit up to the edges and then trim off any excessive areas of overhang. Roll the offcut into a ball and use it to dab the pastry into the edges of the tin creating a nice angular upright edge and pressing the sides into the fluting of the tin. In my opinion this bit makes the difference between ‘had-a-go’ or ‘hero’.
Before baking, prick it all over with a fork, lots and lots and lots.
Now, take a generous sheet of baking paper and gently scrunch it up into a rough ball before carefully unfolding it. I find this little procedure makes it far easier to manipulate the paper right up to edges of the pastry case. Fill this with baking beans. Be generous, use the whole pot.
In my oven, preheated to 180⁰C, I give this 17 minutes blind, then I remove the paper and beans and trim off the overhanging pastry up to the edge of the tart case using a small serrated knife, like so;
If the base needs longer but the edges are about right, turn down the temperature by 15⁰C and cover it loosely with the baking paper you’ve just chucked away.
(If you intend to fill the case with a fairly liquid filling, it would be advisable to ‘varnish’ the cooked pastry case with egg wash and thereby painting over the fork holes, for the final few minutes of baking)