The friend who introduced me to Dessert Grec also introduced me to the New York Times Health Section recipes. Like so many in the DC area, I get the Washington Post, and don't read the Times. Even if I did, I wouldn't look to the Health Section for something to eat, but that is where Martha Rose Schulman posts a new recipe every week, one purporting to have certain healthful components. I found the setup a bit cumbersome, a recipe index would be handier than an un-alphabetized list of themes/ingredients, but C- likes it and while I was visiting last month, we made a few of the recipes. Some were better than others (cauliflower topped with nearly straight up tahini was a miss) but I was intrigued by a whole pastry dough made with yeast and resolved to give it another go when I got home.
When I got home a few weeks ago, I made a batch of the dough in about 5 minutes, using my KitchenAid. So far so good. The dough rose exactly as expected and I rolled a little less than half of it out to use as a crust for a spinach pie. As Schulman notes, it is easier to work with than a traditional pie crust- the gluten you develop with a light kneading makes the dough stronger and less prone to holes and breaking. Another plus- it's made with half whole wheat flour and perhaps the biggest plus of all, just a quarter of a cup of olive oil, making it much lower in fat, saturated fat, and calories than a traditional crust. It does have a pronounced whole wheat flavor, which I liked in the spinach pie, but which has the potential to overpower more delicate ingredients. I found it a tad salty as well; next time I'll reduce the salt a bit and see if that helps.
Even with the slight problems, this is my new go-to crust for savory applications, especially in pie form. For sweet things and if when I want a flakier crust, say for free form apple pie, I'll still use my Better for You Pie Crust . One last note- with the dough scraps from tonight's dinner, I made simple plain and cinnamon sugar crackers, the best homemade crackers I've ever made. It's worth making a batch or half batch of the dough, rolling it thin, and then baking it up for a crispy snack.
For Martha Rose Schulman's Whole Wheat Yeasted Olive Oil Pastry click here.