Chef Mesnier’s Crust from First Lady Laura Bush
3 1/2 cups cake flour
1/2 cup water
4 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups shortening, plus some for greasing parchment paper
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Place ingredients in mixing bowl; using paddle attachment of an electric mixer, mix until well blended.
Divide dough in two; shape each into a ball. Roll out on floured surface to fit a 12-inch glass pie plate. Trim crust at edge of plate (edge will be covered with whipped cream).
Prick crust with fork on bottom and sides. Crumple a piece of parchment paper; open up and grease one side of paper. Place greased side down in crust; fill bottom and a little up the sides with dried beans. Bake 15 minutes; remove from oven, and carefully remove paper and beans. If crust tears, patch it by pressing together with your fingers. Bake another 10 minutes, until crust is brown, and remove.
It is not necessary to wait for crust to cool before filling. Yield: Dough for two 12-inch pie shells.