Why do pies get a soggy bottom?
It wouldn’t be a Great British Bake Off without a soggy bottom or two, just make sure it’s not yours.
Asked by: Anonymous
The main ingredients in pastry are flour and fat. The gluten in the flour gives pastry its texture, while fat offers flavour. If the fat melts before a strong gluten structure has formed, the pastry will end up soggy. Overly moist fillings can also contribute to a soggy bottom as the liquid will drop to the bottom of the pie and ooze into the pastry. To ensure crisp pastry, the base can be blind baked before adding the filling. Alternatively, fillings should be cooled before adding to the pastry to cut down on the amount of steam, and therefore moisture, that’s produced. Cutting large slits into the lid of the pie ensures that steam can escape.
Use a sturdy, good-quality tin if you want to avoid a soggy bottom as they heat faster than flimsy ones and retain higher temperatures, which keeps pastry crisp.
Subscribe to BBC Focus magazine for fascinating new Q&As every month and follow @sciencefocusQA on Twitter for your daily dose of fun science facts.
May Half Price Sale
- Save up to 52% when you subscribe to BBC Science Focus Magazine.
- Risk - free offer! Cancel at any time when you subscribe via Direct Debit.
- FREE UK delivery.
- Stay up to date with the latest developments in the worlds of science and technology.