You may have noticed, but I have a bit of a thing for rhubarb.
I think it’s really because I feel like for most of my life, there has been a severe rhubarb deficit. You see, I didn’t even discover rhubarb until we started going to local markets a few years ago. And then I didn’t know that liked, I mean, really LIKED it, until last year. When I made what was then the first annual incarnation of this pie.
Before I made this pie, I had enough experience with rhubarb to know that I enjoyed it’s tart kick in a sweet baked good. I knew it was very good in a lovely big crumb coffee cake, and a great companion vegetable in my go-to casual dessert, a good fruit crisp. I even knew that the idea of rhubarb pie was something to sing about, thanks to some prairie home time.
But it wasn’t until I innocently and unknowingly made this pie last June for a cookout at a friend’s that I discovered how truly AMAZING rhubarb is. Because together with strawberries, in a flaky, all-butter pie crust, rhubarb sings. And it hits ALL the high notes.
So if your looking for something to end this rhubarb season on a high note, may I suggest this pie?
And without further ado…I’ll let the pie take it away!
Strawberry Rhubarb Pie
Adapted from Epicurious
Like all pies with a rolled crust, this is a little bit of work. But with the cinnamon filling and all of the bursting at the seams spring goodness, how can you resist?
Two tips for this pie. Use all-butter to make the crust, and make sure your water is ice cold by letting a few ice cubes float in a measuring cup with it before you measure it out. And don’t be tempted to pull this pie out as soon as the crust starts to brown. The pie must stay in the oven for about an hour and a half until the filling is good and bubbly if you want the center to set. Otherwise, it will be a really runny mess. It will still be plenty juicy if you let it bake the whole time, but the filling will be a bit thicker.
3 cups all purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 sticks plus 7 tablespoons (yes that’s almost three sticks!) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
10 tablespoons (about) ice water
3 1/2 cups 1/2-inch-thick slices trimmed rhubarb (1 1/2 pounds untrimmed. I used frozen rhubarb and it worked great)
1 16-ounce container strawberries, hulled, halved (about 3 1/2 cups)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
pinch of cloves (optional, but yummy)
1 large egg yolk beaten to blend with 1 teaspoon water (for glaze)
Combine flour, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Using a pastry blender or two forks, cut in butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Add water, a few tablespoons at a time, using your hands to mix the water into the flour/butter mixture. Add water until all flour is incorporated or you’ve used all 10 tablespoons. Divide dough in half, flatten each half into a disc, and wrap each one in plastic wrap. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour. Can be made 1 day ahead. Keep chilled. Let dough soften slightly at room temperature before rolling.
Preheat oven to 400°F. Combine first 7 ingredients in large bowl. Toss gently to blend.
Roll out 1 dough disk on floured work surface to 13-inch round. A pastry mat works really well here. Transfer to 9-inch-diameter pie dish. Trim excess dough, leaving 3/4-inch overhang.
Roll out second dough disk on lightly floured surface to 13-inch round. Cut into fourteen 1/2-inch to 1-inch wide strips. Spoon filling into crust. If it seems like there is too much liquid, spoon some out. Arrange 7 dough strips atop filling, spacing evenly. Form lattice by placing remaining dough strips in opposite direction atop filling, weaving in and out if you want (I always do!). Trim ends of dough strips even with overhang of bottom crust. Fold strip ends and overhang under, pressing to seal. Crimp edges decoratively.
Brush glaze over crust, sprinkle top of pie with turbinado sugar or sparkling sugar (optional), and place pie on baking sheet, since this one has a tendency to splatter. Bake 20 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F. Bake pie until golden and filling thickens, about 1 hour more. Transfer pie to rack and cool completely before cutting. This is important, because it helps the filling set up!
Enjoy a slice of spring heaven and sing a happy song!