Makes 1 pie shell or 1 top (for a double-crust pie).

Note: "The trick to getting it to bake up nice and flaky is to chill all the ingredients ahead of time in the bowl you're going to be working in," write authors Matt and Ted Lee. "If it's really warm out, we even put our rolling pin in the freezer while the ingredients are chilling. Although some people like to use cake flour in their pie crusts, we like the flavor of all-purpose better." From "The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook" (W.W. Norton, $35).

• 11/2 c. sifted flour, plus more for dusting

• 1 tbsp. sugar

• 1 tsp. salt

• 4 tbsp. cold lard, cut into small pieces

• 4 tbsp. cold butter, cut into small pieces

• 1/4 c. ice water


In a medium bowl, sift together flour, sugar and salt. Sprinkle pieces of lard and butter over flour mixture and place bowl in refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Dust work surface with flour. If pre-baking, preheat oven to 325 degrees. Using a pastry blender or your fingertips, cut lard and butter into flour mixture until mixture resembles coarse crumbs, with a scattering of pea-sized pieces throughout. Add ice water a tablespoon at a time, and toss with a fork to combine after each addition, until pastry holds together when pinched (you may not use all of ice water).

Gather pastry together into a round disk, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 15 minutes or until ready to use. With a floured pin, roll out dough on floured surface to a 12-inch round.

To make a pie shell, transfer to a 9-inch pie pan (to make top of a double-crust pie, simply slide a baking sheet under 12-inch round and refrigerate for 15 minutes or until ready to use).

Fold any excess dough that hangs below rim of pan to the top of rim so you have enough material to crimp. Cut off any egregious excess and use it to patch any holes or tears. Refrigerate before filling or pre-baking.

To pre-bake, lay a sheet of aluminum foil over dough and carefully scatter pie weights, dried beans or pennies into pan. Bake on middle rack for 12 to 15 minutes. Remove pie weights and foil, prick bottom of crust with a fork and bake for 10 minutes more, or until bottom of crust appears dry.

Nutrition information per serving:

CaloriesXXFatXX gSodiumXXX mg

CarbohydratesXXX gSaturated fatXX gCalciumXX mg

ProteinXX gTrans fatXX gDietary fiberXX g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: xx milk, xx vegetable, xx fruit, xx bread/starch, xx other carb, xx lean meat, xx medium-fat meat, xx high-fat meat, xx fat.