For a traditional Southern pie crust—like this one, shown to us by Southern cook extraordinaire Anne Coleman—use a combination of shortening and butter. It makes the crust extra flaky and still very tasty, perfect for custardy fillings.
1 1⁄2 cups flour
1⁄2 tsp. salt
4 tbsp. chilled shortening
4 tbsp. chilled butter
1 egg, lightly beaten
1. Sift together flour and salt into a medium bowl. Cut in shortening and butter with a pastry cutter (or rub in with your fingers) until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add egg and sprinkle in 2–3 tbsp. ice water, stirring with a fork until dough just holds together. Wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
2. Roll out dough into a 12" circle on a floured work surface. Line a 9" pie pan with dough and crimp edges. Crust is ready to be filled and baked.