My absolute favorite pie of all time is Strawberry-Rhubarb, (Followed closely by Cherry). The sweet of fresh berries combined with their tart side, and the wonderful tang of Rhubarb is truly hard to beat. Here’s a an easy to make recipe for the whole shebang!
The root of any great pie of course is the crust, so let’s chat about that for a sec. Probably safe to say that the number one sin committed in the name of bad pie crust is excessive handling. Pie crust will end up flaky and light if you use the right ratio of ingredients and handle it as little as possible. When the ingredients are just mixed and holding together is the time to stop and let it rest!
The Kitchenaid crust recipe is my go-to, so here it is. If you don’t have a mixer, no problem. Use your fingers or two butter knives to cut and mix ingredients and, as with the mixer version, stop playing with the crust as soon as it holds together.
2 ¼ cups all purpose flour
¾ cup shortening, chilled
2 teaspoons butter, chilled
4 – 6 tablespoons of very cold water
Sift flour and pour into mixing bowl. Cut shortening and butter into roughly ½” cubes and add to flour. Using the flat beater, mix on low speed for about 30 seconds until shortening chunks are roughly pea sized. Slowly add water a tablespoon at a time until and only until the dough forms a ball. Stop mixing, wrap dough in plastic and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes. Roll dough out to roughly 1/8” thickness and place into pie pan. For moist filing pies, blind bake the crust prior to filling. To blind bake, put crust in a preheated 425º F oven for 6 to 8 minutes until it browns lightly. Allow crust to cool completely before ya fill it!
1 1/2 cups granulated white sugar.
3 tablespoons tapioca.
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg.
4-6 stalks fresh rhubarb, rinsed, end cut off and chopped to roughly 1” pieces.
1 ½ cups fresh strawberries, rinsed, tops cut off and halved.
2 tablespoons butter, well chilled
Dash of salt.
Combine all ingredients except the butter in a non-reactive bowl. Mix gently until fruit is thoroughly and evenly coated with other ingredients. Pour filling into cool, blind baked crust.
Top crust method is up to you! You can do woven, solid, whatever you please. If you do a solid tip crust, cut several slits a couple inches long in the top crust to avoid Exploding Pie Disorder!
Bake in a preheated 425º F oven for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350º F and continue baking for 20 minutes. Remove pie and place on a cooling rack. Allow to cool thoroughly before serving, (To avoid Sloppy Pie Syndrome!)
Vanilla ice cream with a nice, fresh mint leaf on top of your first slice does nothing wrong at all, (Especially of the ice cream is freshly homemade…)