A pastry frame is a device in the form of an assembled frame whose purpose is to hold a “pastry cloth” in place while you are rolling out pastry on it.
The frame stretches the cloth out tightly on the work surface, and stops the cloth from moving about.
For other senses of the term “pastry frame”, see “pastry frames.”
Pastry frame construction
The frame can be made of wood, metal or a combination of metal and wood.
A typical size for a frame is about 50 cm (21 inches) square. It usually has brackets at the front designed to extend over the edge of work surface to help anchor the frame in place as you are working.
Most models are designed so that the pastry cloth will be stretched very taut. You may have to bend the metal rods slightly as you are assembling it. It comes apart afterward for storage.
Pastry frames are usually sold with a pastry cloth, and often include a rolling pin cover as well.
Assembling a pastry frame
The wood slats have notches on the ends of them.
There are folded, stitched ends at the top and bottom of the cloth.
Insert these wood slats into these ends, and do so in a manner that the notched sides of their ends face downwards.
Treat the end of the cloth with the numbers on them as the front of the cloth and lay it with these numbers facing you.
At each end of the metal rods, there are horizontal eyes. One end of each rod has an eye, plus a table clip pointing downwards.
Attach the rods to the wood slats in this manner:
- The eyes on the metal rods go over the notches on the wooden slats;
- The ends of the metal rods that have the table clips go at the front of the cloth, where the numbers are;
- You will have to bend the metal rods to get both ends of the metal rods attached.
Assembled, it should look like it does in the video below. This allows the table clips to hold the cloth at the front of the table or work surface.
Video of pastry frame
Using a pastry frame
Use it in the same manner as you would a pastry cloth. The frame acts merely as an anchor to hold the cloth in place while you are working.
Place it on your work surface with the anchor hooks nearest you. The entire assembly should lie entirely flat on your work surface (aside from perhaps some curvature of the metal rods.)
The cloth will almost certainly get stained over the years from the fats in the pastry; that won’t affect its performance.
Should you dislike this, it is unclear if any manufacturers sell replacement cloths, or if you have to buy all new complete pastry frame kits.