Pastry Dough is made of ingredients generally including four basic elements- a flour, a fat, salt, a hydrator, and sometimes a flavoring.
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 to 5 tablespoons ice water
Blend together flour, butter, and salt in a bowl with your fingertips or a pastry blender (or pulse in a food processor) just until mixture resembles coarse meal with some roughly pea-size butter lumps.
Drizzle 3 tablespoons ice water evenly over mixture and gently stir with a fork (or pulse in processor) until incorporated.
Squeeze a small handful: If it doesn't hold together, add more ice water, 1/2 tablespoon at a time, stirring (or pulsing) until incorporated, then test again. Do not overwork dough or pastry will be tough.
Turn out dough onto a lightly floured surface and divide into 4 portions.
Using the heel of your hand, smear each portion once or twice in a forward motion to help distribute fat.
Gather dough together, with a pastry scraper if you have one, and press into a 5-inch disk.
Chill, wrapped in plastic wrap, until firm, at least 1 hour.
Pie Dough is much thicker and sturdier than a puff pastry.
Pie crusts provide a more solid bite and thus foundation to hold pie fillings.
Pie crusts tend to be more buttery and flaky but are a more stable vessel for holding pie filling.
Puff pastry is fluffier and crispier than pie dough.
Puff Pastry is similar to pie dough but they are not the same thing.
When you bake Puff Pastry the Puff Pastry layers begin to separate and “puff” which is why it's called Puff Pastry.
Then the tiny pieces of butter that remain help to make the pie crust flaky when is baked, but the resulting pie crust is much thicker and sturdier than a puff pastry.
Pie crusts also provide a more solid bite and thus foundation to hold pie fillings.
Puff pastry can be used for the base of a pie.
You can use puff pastry to bake pies with and it will turn out just fine just like when you used regular pie crust.
I've baked pies using puff pastry as the base of a pie and it turned out great.
Puff Pastry does make great Pie Crusts especially for pies such as Fruit Pies.
To use Puff Pastry for pies just roll out frozen or homemade puff pastry to 1/8-inch thick and follow the instructions for par-baking regular pie dough.
To keep the bottom of your puff pastry from getting soggy make sure to preheat the oven to 400 F degrees and use a thick baking pan and brush the baking pan with a layer of Apricot Jam.
Most Professional Chefs who bake Puff Pastry will layer the baking pan or baking sheet with a layer of Apricot Jam which works wonders to prevent the bottom of the Puff Pastry From Becoming Soggy.
It has worked great for me after I learned to use the Apricot Jam on the bottom of the pan.
You can also brush the bottom of the baking sheet with eggs as well which also helps the puff pastry keep from becoming soggy as well.
Yes you do Thaw out Puff Pastry before baking it.
You must Thaw Puff Pastry Before Baking the puff pastry or it won't bake and turn out correctly.
Thawing the Puff Pastry out allows the Pastry to become pliable without softening too much.
When Thawing the Puff Pastry Out before baking it it's best to thaw the Puff Pastry out overnight in the fridge and then it will be ready the next morning to bake.
When you don't Thaw Puff Pastry Before baking it the Puff Pastry will not hold it's shape when baked and may also fall apart.
So take the time to allow the Puff Pastry To Thaw out first and then bake it.