Olive Oil, Whole-wheat, Yeasted Pastry

A versatile, quite easy olive oil pastry with yeast that makes a lovely crust for savory as well as sweet tarts. See note to see how you can store the rolled dough in the freezer, which gives you the possibility to double the recipe, so that you have a pastry shell to use whenever you feel like whipping up a pie.

It is adapted from Martha Rose Shulman’s recipe, as published in the NY Times Cooking.




Makes Two 10-inch tart shells


2/3 cup whole-wheat flour


1 cup all purpose flour (more as needed)


1 cup finely ground almonds or walnuts


2 teaspoons instant dry yeast


1 teaspoon salt


2 teaspoons sugar, if you use in sweet tarts, or ½ teaspoon for the savory ones


1 large egg, at room temperature, lightly beaten


¼ cup olive oil


A few tablespoons water, as needed



In a bowl toss the flours and ground nuts together with the yeast, salt, and sugar.


Add the egg and olive oil and stir the dough with a wooden spoon or transfer to a mixer and combine the ingredients using the paddle.


Work the dough until it comes together in a coherent mass, adding more flour or a 1-2 tablespoons water, as needed.


Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface, and knead gently for a few minutes, adding flour as necessary, just until the dough is just smooth; do not overwork it.


 Shape into a ball. Place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover the dough tightly with oiled plastic wrap, and allow to rise until doubled in size, about one hour.


OR you can place in the refrigerator and leave to rise slowly overnight. Take out of the refrigerator 2 hours before shaping, so that the dough comes to room temperature.


Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently a couple of times. Divide into two equal pieces –or as directed in the pie you are making.


For a round tart, shape each piece into a ball without kneading it further. Cover loosely with plastic wrap, and let rest for five minutes, then roll out into thin rounds or long strips, as directed in the recipe, to line pans.



If you are not using the crust right away, freeze the rolled, thin dough to prevent it from rising and becoming too bready. The dough can be transferred directly from the freezer to the oven. The rolled out dough will keep for a month or more in the freezer if it’s well wrapped.






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