How to Use Filo Pastry

Filo pastry crisps up a treat when used properly. Once you’ve learned the basics you’re on your way to crispy new heights.

1. The first thing to remember is that filo pastry dries out. Keep any spare bits covered with a clean cloth while you work.

Lay your first sheet out on a board and brush all over with melted butter. This makes it crisp and buttery, but you can also use oil if you want to.

In this example Richard has small sheets to make individual tarts. You can cut your sheets to the size you need.

2. Lay another sheet on top and brush that too with melted butter.

3. Keep on layering, brushing each one as you go with the butter. As a general rule you’ll need at least 2 sheets for a case or wrapping. Any less and the pastry could break and fall apart.

4. Lay the pastry on top of an upturned tart case.

5. Shape and tuck it around using your fingers. It’s quite easy to shape so you can get it looking really pretty.

6. Bake the pastry cases for about 10 minutes at 180°C/gas mark 4. You want them lightly and evenly golden.

The pastry cooks relatively quickly and colours nicely when it’s brushed it with butter or oil. You can also use low calorie oil spray for a healthier alternative.

Check out all the recipes featured on Cookery School.

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